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A gazillion years ago, I was part of a group of adults and youth who went on a mission trip to Mexico. One of the many plans for the week, while we were there, was to help build an aqueduct on the outskirts of a piece of property that now has a building that serves as a Bible School and many other outreaches for the surrounding villages.
Let me preface this: one person in our group, besides the missionary, spoke fluent enough spanish to carry on a conversation, let alone follow directions. Take a minute and create a picture in your mind. Twenty Indiana Hoosiers ranging in age from 16-60, standing on rocky land, looking at a pile of stones and surveying where they wanted to build the aqueduct. We followed a lot of pointed fingers and watched the direction of their eyes to communicate.
First we had to move the rocks from what felt like way up a hill to the bottom of the hill! An assembly line was formed and rocks and stones were passed from person to person to where they needed the stones. A pile quickly formed where the guys who knew what they were doing were working. At one point I ended up towards the end of the line and was handing the stones to the guys to place in just the right spot. As I observed, they knew what stones had already been placed and knew the type of stone they were looking for next. As they looked ahead, they knew what stones they would need later. I could see the wheels turning, the mind processing, silent decisions being made for each stone that they looked over. I was mesmerized by their intuition of what was needed where. Certain stones fit best in certain spots. If placed differently, it could negatively affect the flow of water. When placed in the right spot, at the right angle, water would flow effortlessly down the aqueduct. A few times we would pick one up and get a “No. No. Not Dat one. Dis one.” He would patiently show us why the one we picked would not work and educate us on why the one he had would work better.
Each stone had a place. They were not haphazardly placed together. They were chosen for a purpose and placed with care knowing that was the right spot for that specific stone.
As living stones for Christ, building up the body of Christ, we too are chosen and placed with purpose. We were not haphazardly created and thrown willy nilly to fend for ourselves. That’s not how God rolls. God knows where He has already placed His people, knows who He needs where currently and sees where He is going to place us in the future. It’s comforting to know He who created me has a plan for me and those around me.
My friends, I need people who have gone before me to help guide and direct my wayward thoughts and choices. It is not a sign of weakness or lack of knowledge to ask for advice and help. It’s a sign of maturity, growth and the desire to follow His lead. God placed “living stones” who have walked before us as His vessels to guide us to Him along the way. I’ve lost count how many times I’ve commented, “I don’t get it. What am I not seeing or understanding?” Within the God ordained moment, He speaks through His vessels and I receive His words of wisdom and comfort.
My friends, we also need the support of those who are walking the same path we are. We need people who are living what we are living through to draw from each other the strength to take the next step. Your common link draws you together and you can cry out “All for One and One for All!” as your battle cry. We moms need other moms to remind us that we are doing a great job, we have not ruined our children, we will survive and they will be responsible adults one day! God placed each of us where we are to be what the other needs at the right time. As He is placing each living stone, He is placing us together for a purpose.
My Friends, we also need to be living stones for others. It’s not just about who God has placed in my life to love, support and encourage me. It’s also about me being a living stone for someone else. He has placed you next to someone who will see Him through you. How awesome is that! God wants me as His vessel to reach out to others so they too, will know Christ and His personal love. It’s humbling to think that someone else wants to ask me questions, seeking wisdom and wanting to know the best way to handle situations. As I pause and lean into the Holy Spirit, He gives me the words and wisdom that need to be shared.
“Finding Nemo” was a popular movie when my kids were toddlers. One of the phrases that was repeated often in the movie was, “Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming.” I’ve adjusted it for my own version. “Just keep praying. Just keep praying.” Consistent communication with Christ will lead us to be living stones as we build up the body of Christ around us, one stone at a time.
Christ is building His church, His family, through us. He knows the stones that have already been laid and are living out His purpose. He observes the current situations and surveys the current stones and places them right where they need to be for one another. He also looks ahead and knows where living stones are going to go in the future at just the right moment. I am mesmerized by His greatness and awestruck by His vision, timing and placement. He is THE Living Stone that we turn to as our example to be a living stone for Him and others.
Take a moment and look around. Who are the living stones around you? How can you be a living stone for Him as you are His vessel to be an example of His love to others?
Seek out Heavenly advice, support one another and share wisdom that He has passed on to you to others.
Thanks for sharing a moment with me. We are in this together, as living stones, in Him.