What Kind of Brick?
Walls are interesting features; they can provide safety within, as well as cause painful isolation. They can be a good reminder of boundaries by helping people to recognize ownership, and they can be a warning: this is mine; you stay on that side.
In Cambodia, most of the houses I lived in had yards whose walls were topped with super sharp razor wire or broken glass which makes a clear statement! Enter at your own risk!
Personal walls work in much the same way. We all need healthy boundaries in which we are able to live out our lives and relate with people. Within those boundaries, we can find self-care practices and the ability to voice our feelings and needs. They can be built with each brick laid being a positive expression of worship and obedience to God.
But what happens when the blueprint goes wrong? Walls can just as equally be built in such a way each brick laid is instead an expression of mistrust of God’s word or insulation against pain. Where instead of keeping us safe, they keep us trapped, unable to scramble past razor wire and glass without being cut in the process.
As we have heard in the series that Elliot is bringing, God is in the wall building business. One of the first things that Nehemiah did was to survey the wall. While we go through this series, it could be a good time to survey our own walls. How about we do our own check of the perimeter, checking each brick against God’s blueprint, if it doesn’t match, set about removing it and replacing it with one of better quality?
And just as Nehemiah was able to testify, so may you experience the ‘gracious hand of God’ upon you as you set to examine your brickwork.