24 Jun



My brother Fred, can build anything! It’s a gift. He intuitively knows how to do it. I remember when he purchased his first home and invited our family to come to see it. As we drove up the winding hills following his directions, our anticipation grew. We turned onto a little two lane road, our hearts swelling with pride that our brother could afford a home in the hills. The hills that we had looked up upon all our lives from the neighborhood we had been raised in down below. My mother was so proud. He had made it! We turned left onto his street, slowing the car down, eagerly looking for his address. To our surprise and our mother’s dismay we came to an abrupt stop. We all sat there in silence, then looked at one another. This can’t be it. Fred must have given us the wrong address. Then we looked at the house waiting for Jed, Granny, Elli Mae and Jethro to come out to greet us. It looked like the back woods shack that the Beverly Hillbillies had lived in before striking oil. Just then my brother burst out of the house with a huge grin on his face, looked at the expressions on our faces and laughed. None of us were smiling as we got out the car. We didn’t see nothing funny. As he invited us in for the tour, he knew that he had us all firmly on the hook. My mother was speechless.

The grand tour took all of a minute. When it ended, my mother asked Fred, in all her Southerness “What’s wrong with you, boy? What possessed you to buy this house? The place you got is better than this!” Fred smiled broadly at my mother, put his arm around her and said, “Momma this place has potential.” He pulled out a blueprint, rolled it out on the counter, and shared with us his vison for his dream house. The house that he intended to build. Shortly thereafter, he got busy tearing down every bit of that shack save the front with its foundation. A cement mason poured a new foundation. A plumber assembled all the water pipes. Every weekend for the next five years, Fred, along with two of my other brothers diligently hammered and nailed until the outside was finally complete. Fred then turned his attention to the inside. An electrician wired the house. However, Fred did the finishing work himself. He put in the sheetrock, laid the oak floors, installed the marble countertops, and beautiful brass fixtures throughout. He RESTORED that raggedy house beyond any grandeur it could have ever possessed, even when it was brand new.

I like that house, am in a state of disrepair. God is the Amazing Architect of my soul. His blueprint for my life is beyond what I can see or ever imagine. When He looks at me, He does so through the eyes of a Master Builder not as the foreman of a demolition crew. While some things, He was able to repair immediately. Most of the major reconstruction of my soul is being completed over a span of time with some areas being suitable for finishing work. Other areas, require removal of unnecessary fixtures. He is stripping down the frills of my life to what’s SIMPLE and functional. I have found that sometimes less is best. More has caused unnecessary clutter, destracted me from what’s really important and has taken too much to maintain. I’m under construction. With each day of this process, I remember to be kind to and patient with myself. I do so by blowing myself this K.I.S.S, KEEP IT SIMPLE SAINT!


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