By: Lisa Lothian
We had been happily living in a one-room studio until the Lord miraculously found us a small, cute two-and-one-half bedroom 1961 cape-styled house in a perfect location — across the street from my aging parents. It felt like a mansion to us, and it was such a blessing. I was seven months pregnant with twins. As the kids grew, we accumulated more necessary items and realized we loved hospitality on a regular basis. We suddenly found ourselves feeling cramped.
We began to pray and discuss the expansion of the house. I remember the discussion involved my husband mentioning raising the roof upstairs on the back end and putting dormers on the front. That sounded like a great idea to me; not too much work and not too much money — easy. That is what I heard, and that is what I was looking forward to!
Then one day my husband walked into the house with the architect’s plans to transform the house into a four-bedroom colonial. I was scared. We would have to move out while the work was being done. We were planning to start homeschooling our six-year-old twins within the year; I felt like I needed stability and normalcy to prepare for that. Instead of just dormers, this renovation was going to require major demolition! Only one bearing wall would remain in the process, while everything else was going to be torn down.
When the construction began, I took the kids to see what was going on. My son howled in horror as he saw the walls of his bedroom being torn down. But he was equally excited about the big trucks that he saw everywhere. About seven months later, we moved back into an absolutely beautiful, new, large home that provided years of space, comfort, refuge, and laughter. It also ultimately proved to be a great investment, as we were subsequently able to sell the renovated house, cash in to make a nice profit, downsize significantly and buy a country property — into which we are now transitioning. In the end, it was all worth the hassle and inconvenience of the demolition.
I have since often pondered how the whole experience relates to our relationship with God and prayer in the life of a Christian. We often want God to change certain things or give us other things, but often we are not open to how He wants to do it. We want dormers — an easy and simple cosmetic fix. The Lord wants demolition; He wants a total transformation (Romans 12:2). He wants us to be entirely new creatures in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). He wants to do new things in our lives (Isaiah 43:19). But we do not want to be too terribly inconvenienced, to leave our comfort zone. There is a cost to investing in our faith, but the results will be beautiful. If we let the Lord construct the outcomes, we will always benefit.
God is the Master Builder, Architect, and Contractor of our lives. He can do it all (Jeremiah 1:10). He can be trusted with the outcomes, and they will always be perfect (James 1:17). When we pray, it truly helps not to tell God what to do all the time, or how to do it. Just let Him do it His way (Isaiah 55:8-9); we will always be better off. Sometimes, in response to our prayers, and to get to the root of what we really desire, He will pluck up and break down our plans in love (Jeremiah 31:28). Yet He will give us more than we can imagine in return (Ephesians 3:20).
I have chosen to let God do His demolition work in me and the circumstances of my life, in order to bring out His purposes to His honor and glory. Will you join me in letting go and letting God reign?