Summary: Handymen have many unfinished jobs which take money and time by a professional to fix. In contrast God, who begins the work in us, will bring it to completion. There is no project to big for God.
I can relate to people who are handy-men. And I fully understand the motivations that drive a handyman
• Certainly there is the motivation to save money. Why pay someone when you can do the job yourself?
• Then there is also the satisfaction which comes when you step back from your project and say, “Look at what I did”.
Personally I think they are great motivations. But being a handyman does put you into dangerous territory sometimes.
One danger is completely underestimating the time it takes for project. I know a man who promised his wife it would only take 4 years to build their own home. They were still living in the shed 10 years later.
Another danger is over-estimating one’s ability to do the work. I mean, how hard can it be, we have seen heaps of people on the renovation shows on TV so there is no reason why we can’t do the same ... is there?
Then there is the fact that you are fitting these projects around work, and family time, and church commitments. So you keep pushing yourself to finish the job at night or a few hours over the weekend, only to find that you are beyond exhaustion and that the project has just become a thorn in your flesh.
And what is the result?
• A whole bunch of half finished projects which sit for years waiting to be done.
• Or the end result looks so bad that not even your mother will tell you that you have done a good job.
• Eventually, for a significant number of handymen, they finally get in a professional. Which kind of defeats the original purpose of saving money and having the satisfaction of doing it yourself.
This is not always the final outcome. But it happens regularly enough for us to be able to put a stereo-type on your typical home handyman. This stereo-type also helps us understand the real contrast between a typical handyman and God.
You see, God is not a handyman.
Let’s turn to Philippians 1:1-11 where we can read about this fact
Did you see the part which tells us that God isn’t a handyman? It’s in verse 6.
Be confident of this:- He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
God is not your average handyman. Every project He sets His mind to is brought to completion.
Now, for something to be brought to completion there needs to be a starting point. Paul hints at this starting point in the very first verse when he says:-
Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, To all the saints in Christ Jesus at Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons.
At some point in history the church at Philippi did not exist. At some point each member of that church were not saints. At some point there was a start to the journey for every person. It happened in the days of Paul ... and it is happening just as much today. Jesus is turning people into saints.
Now when we first hear the word ‘saint’ we often call to mind a really holy person. Currently the Catholic Church in Australia is going through the process of making Mary McKillop a saint.
• She has done some incredible acts of sacrificial service.
• She is someone who people look up to and respect.
• Like many saints she will probably end up having a church named after her.
That is what many people think about when they hear the word ‘saint’. It’s not necessarily wrong; it’s just that the Bible’s definition of how one becomes a saint is quite different.
The word “saint” in the Bible literally means, the ones who have been made holy
The primary issue here is not the great things you have done, but the fact that you have been set apart. To help us understand what I mean let’s talk about a building which is most described in the Old Testament … it was known as the tabernacle or temple.
The tabernacle was first built when the Israelites were wondering in the desert away from Egypt and on their way to the Promised Land. It was built by master craftsmen. Later, when the Israelites were settled in the Promised Land, the Tabernacle was packed away and the Temple was built. They were both places of worship; God’s seat on earth. This was a special place. Therefore all the items in the tabernacle and temple had to be holy.
Now the thing about these holy items is that, before they were used in the place of worship, they were just ordinary. Take the pottery as an example. All the pottery would be at the pottery shop.