Stephen Caswell © 2003
Not Built In A Day
It took many years to build Verdum into a fortress.
This city-fortress the Crown Prince strove in vain to carry by storm during the World War.
He marched his men in solid mass, shoulder-to-shoulder, and eight hundred thousand died.
But the fortress-city was never taken.
To build a Christian home takes both perseverance and dependence upon God.
*/The family that God blesses is the one that depends on Him .
/ *Let me say that again*.*
When you think about the blessings of God, remember one child’s description of an elevator: */I got into a little room and the upstairs came down/.*
/For Christians to receive God's blessings we must live in dependence upon Him./
In words that reflect Ecclesiastes the author says /it is vain to attempt things without the Lord./
He says that the family God blesses depends on Him.
Blessed families don't */Build in Vain/*, */Watch in Vain/*, or */Work in Vain./*
Doesn't Build In Vain - Stability Depends on God
*Psalm 127:1:* /Unless the Lord builds the house, They labor in vain who build it; /
The Great Australian Dream
One of the things that Australian people desire above all is to have a place they can call their own.
In our time this has been dubbed the */Great Aussie Dream./*
We want to have our own castle, somewhere we can hang our hat and raise our kids.
Our own little retreat from the world.
TV shows like Hot Auction, Changing Rooms, Room for Improvement, Location Location and Backyard Blitz emphasise how true this is today.
/You might say, what's wrong with that?/ /It's a worthy pursuit isn't it?/
*/Why, does the Psalmist say to build our own home is vain?/*/ /Because most Australians build their houses */independently of God./*
They labor and toil without considering the plans that God has for them.
Many Australians build houses but very few Australians own homes.
Most Australians share their house with their families, yet very few families share a Christian heritage.
/Unless the Lord builds the house we labor in vain./
*Proverbs 19:21:* /There are many plans in a man’s heart, Nevertheless the Lord’s counsel — that will stand/.
/Why is it vain to build our house without God?/
Because only God can bring stability to our home.
Only the Rock of Ages can make our homes last.
Today the divorce rate is running at over 50%.
Children are growing up in broken homes and often suffer abuse from the very people who ought to protect them.
Continually the homes of broken families are sold off and divided up in the divorce courts.
These broken families are the result of building independently of God.
The parents */labored in vain/*.
*Matthew 7:26-27:*/ Everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell.
And great was its fall./
*/To have Stability in your home you must depend on God./*
Building Our First Home
After Sandy and I had been married about 18 months we built our home.
Firstly we purchased land at Manly for extravagent price of $19,000.00.
Then we decided on the homes design and sought out an Architect to draw up the plans.
We wanted our home to suit our needs now and later as our family grew.
Then we engaged a builder with a good reputation.
We wanted a solid house to provide shelter and protection for our family.
Finally we chose the bricks and materials that would go into our home.
Along the way we committed our plans to God to Whom we also dedicated our home.
To build a good home we needed the right */Blueprints/*, the right */Builder/* and the right */Bricks./*
The same is true when it comes to building a Christian Home.
The Right Blueprints/
If we want to build a Christian Home we need to use the right blueprint.
We need to build according to God's plans.
/How can we know God's plans for us?
How can where God wants us to live?
How can we know what God wants us to do with our lives?
Whom we should marry, what career we should pursue?/
These are important issues.
*/How can we find out God's will in these?
How can we know His plans?/* *Proverbs 3:5-6:* /Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.
*Psalm 33:11:* /The counsel of the Lord stands forever, The plans of His heart to all generations.
*Prayer*/ is vitally important in knowing God's will.
We should ask God to direct our paths.
Before we make decisions we ought to pray and ask for God's leading.
Our responsibility is to seek the Lord's will in prayer.
In response He guides us through the Word, other Christians and our circumstances.
He gives us His peace when we make the right choices.
*/Will you seek out God's plans for your life?/*
The Right Builder/
Putting Up Our Patio
Having the right plans is so important.
But so is getting the right builder.
It's one thing to look at a glossy photograph of our home, its another thing altogether to build it.
Earlier this year we had a patio attached to our home.
Believe it or not I was actually considering putting it up myself.
Fortunately I decided not to do it.
I recognised that it was a task beyond my abilities.
So I called in an expert.
Someone who had the training and skill to complete the job according to the plan.
The same is true of building a Christian home.
We can't do it on our own, we need help.
A Christian home is not the building, it's the family inside.
The */Lord is the Master Builder/* who alone can build a strong family.
To have a solid Christian home Jesus Christ must be the Head.
To do this we must submit to Christ and the commandments He gives us in the Word.
Christ is the Builder and we must obey Him.
We are His labourers.
As Christian parents, we have been given the responsibility to teach our children about the Lord.
Through the Bible the Master Builder tells us how to build our home.
We must labor together with the Lord.
We must example our Christian faith each day not just on Sundays.
*Matt 7:24-25:* /Therefore whoever *hears* these sayings of Mine, and *does them*, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock./
The Right Bricks/
Blueprints and Builders are very important.