If We Build It…

Will They Come?

If You Build ItYou do not have to be a movie buff to know the line, “If you build it, they will come!”

It is connected to a mystical baseball movie about a guy who builds a ball field in his cornfield after hearing a voice speak to him. Players of old come to play, including his dad, and the mystery ends with a re-connection of generations on several levels.

Have you ever tried to build something? I am not a carpenter, nor do I have any trades that someone would pay me for, but if push comes to shove then I can at least throw up a building that will keep the elements at bay. It would probably look something like this…

They don't make them like this any more...

Have you heard the story of the Three Little Pigs? We keep making it a modern story to fit our sensibilities, but the more original version is a bit more violent than we want to teach our kids today!

Once upon a time there were three little pigs, who went from home to seek their fortune.

The first that went off met a man with a bundle of straw, and said to him: “Good man, give me that straw to build me a house.” The man gave the straw, and the little pig built his house with it. Presently came along a wolf, and knocked at the door, and said: “Little pig, little pig, let me come in.”

But the pig answered: “No, no, by the hair of my chiny-chin-chin.”
So the wolf said: “Then I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I’ll blow your house in.”
So he huffed, and he puffed, and he blew his house in, and ate up the little pig.

The second little pig met a man with a bundle of furze, and said: “Good man, give me that furze to build me a house.” The man gave the furze, and the pig built his house.
Then once more came the wolf, and said: “Little pig, little pig, let me come in.”

“No, no, by the hair of my chiny-chin-chin.”
“Then I’ll puff, and I’ll huff, and I’ll blow your house in.”
So he huffed, and he puffed, and he puffed and he huffed, and at last he blew the house in, and ate up the little pig.

The third little pig met a man with a load of bricks, and said: “Good man, give me those bricks to build me a house with.” The man gave the bricks, and he built his house with them. Again the wolf came, and said: “Little pig, little pig, let me come in.”

“No, no, by the hair of my chiny-chin-chin.”
“Then I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I’ll blow your house in.”
So he huffed, and he puffed, and he huffed, and he puffed, and he puffed and huffed; but he could NOT get the house down.

Finding that he could not, with all his huffing and puffing, blow the house down, he said: “Little pig, I know where there is a nice field of turnips.”  “Where?” said the little pig. “Oh, in Mr Smith’s field, and if you will be ready to-morrow morning we will go together, and get some for dinner.”  “Very well,” said the little pig. “What time do you mean to go?” “Oh, at six o’clock.”

So the little pig got up at five, and got the turnips before the wolf came crying:
“Little pig, are you ready?” The little pig said: “Ready! I have been and come back again, and got a nice potful for dinner.” The wolf felt very angry at this, but thought that he would be a match for the little pig somehow or other, so he said: “Little pig, I know where there is a nice apple-tree.” “Where?” said the pig. “Down at Merry-garden,” replied the wolf, “and if you will not deceive me I will come for you, at five o’clock to-morrow, and get some apples.”
The little pig got up next morning at four o’clock, and went off for the apples, hoping to get back before the wolf came; but it took long to climb the tree, and just as he was coming down from it, he saw the wolf coming. When the wolf came up he said: “Little pig, what! are you here before me? Are they nice apples?” “Yes, very,” said the little pig. “I will throw you down one.” And he threw it so far that, while the wolf was gone to pick it up, the little pig jumped down and ran home.

The next day the wolf came again, and said to the little pig:– “Little pig, there is a fair in town this afternoon; will you go?’ “Oh yes,” said the pig, “I will go; what time?” “At three,” said the wolf. As usual the little pig went off before the time, and got to the fair, and bought a butter-churn, which he was rolling home when he saw the wolf coming. So he got into the churn to hide, and in so doing turned it round, and it rolled down the hill with the pig in it, which frightened the wolf so much that he ran home without going to the fair. He went to the little pig’s house, and told him how frightened he had been by a great round thing which came past him down the hill.

Then the little pig said. “Ha! ha! I frightened you, then!” Then the wolf was very angry indeed, and tried to get down the chimney in order to eat up the little pig. When the little pig saw what he was about, he put a pot full of water on the blazing fire, and, just as the wolf was coming down, he took off the cover, and in fell the wolf. Quickly the little pig clapped on the cover, and when the wolf was boiled ate him for supper.

Jesus teaches a much more practical story than this fable.
He teaches us a story of two men who go to build a house. All things being equal, their houses could have been identical. One builds where the sands shifted with the wind and the rain – and of course, his house falls. The other builds on the rocks where the foundation holds even with the same violent weather.

You see, Content is important! Along with, “Location, location, location!”

Yet the key is, the Storms of Life tests everyone equally. How well you have you built? It’s often less about the material, and more about your foundation.

1 Cor 3: 11-15 11 For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; 13 Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. 14 If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. 15 If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by fire.

What part of life will fail? All of life will suffer the trials of life but not everything comes through the trials the same. Some things survive better than other things!

I wonder what we are building our walk with Christ on? Is it the good material on solid ground that will carry us through the storms of life? Or perhaps, it is built with anything at hand, and in any place we choose.

A new neighbor to our street had big plans on building a barn. He trimmed back trees and bushes, bull dozed the land level, and then staked out the corners for his barn. I chatted with him about his plans and was happy to see the land being updated, however, I warned him about the lowlands and how I had seen water creep to within a couple of feet of his house. His answer? I’ll just build the barn higher.

Time will tell if he makes the right choice, but this is appropriate to think about for all of us.

What choices are you making in your life?