I enjoy the television program Fixer Upper with the Gaines family. They choose a home that is broken, well used, patched over, and often with a poor foundation. They then go to work bringing life back into the structure. The first work that must be done is Chip’s favorite part, demolition day. It is the time when they decide what will stay and what must go. The unneeded walls are removed. Then slowly they work with a design often determined by the existing structure to rebuild.
With the needed walls removed, they can have an open and clear view of the major living area. The kitchen, living room and dining are all sharing a common space. This often requires adding additional support to carry the weight previously held by the old walls. Along the way they may run into code violations, toxic products, critter damage, and major foundation issues. All of these must be corrected before the structure can be rebuilt. Slowly one by one the issues are fixed and the home can find new life. This is not a quick fix. It is a total reconstruction from the inside out. These issues are not fixed with a coat of paint, or new wall paper. They are taken to the base structures and started over. My favorite part is when the cleanup reveals previous beauty that had been covered and long forgotten. The wood floors covered by carpet. Wood craftsmanship from years back are once again given new life. Years of abuse are sanded away and the true beauty shines through. It is not until near the end of the project that the dressing up part takes place. The baton must be passed only after the debris is removed, and structure is repaired.
Even the final steps are done with care and planning. Colors, products, and styles must all be unified to highlight the strengths of the home. The landscape must suite the environment of the region of the country it is located in. Every detail is considered from the base foundation to the peak of the roof. The end result does not draw attention to the Gaines, it is a reflection of the family that will soon live within the walls. While they breathed new life into a broken structure, it is not for their use. The house they fixed will now be the home of someone to enjoy.
Okay now for the honest truth. I am a fixer upper. Over the last several years, God has had days of demolition, days of foundation repair, and days of toxic product removal. Yes, it hurts, and is not a fun process. The result has been at time that God has found previously covered and hidden beauty. God has also shown me the potential for His original creation.
The hardest lesson to date is that HE loves this old structure even more that I do. God was the original creator and has a love for me that I do not even have for myself. He knew want walls needed to be removed and which ones needed to be reinforced.
I am not yet ready for the phase of beautification. That may not even take place during my earthly stay. What I have seen is that God’s image can on rare occasion be seen in the new structure. At this time it is only an occasional glimpse. But those moments keep me from wanting to replace the walls that have been removed. I never want to go back to what I had created. I am not the craftsman that I thought I was. I am now however a willing vessel giving God freedom to mold me into a new creation. To breathe new life into this broken servant.