The Project

November 5, 2013
by Lynne Phipps

Matthew 7:1-2 – Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. (NIV)

A Dutch door was exactly what I had always envisioned between the kitchen portion and the back room of our home. I could use the bottom half of the door as a gate to keep the dogs out of the kitchen, but to keep the cats out I could shut the whole door. Yes, a Dutch door would be the ideal solution. So I decided that I should build one; this would be my project. After all, how hard could it be?

I measured, and talked with the right people at the hardware store, and made a list of everything I would need, and then, when I knew I would have some time to work on my project, I bought my supplies. I pulled out my saws and cordless drill, my level and tape measure from the storage area and thus, I began. My daughter joined in to help with the project as we figured four hands are always better than two.

I had downloaded an instruction sheet off the Internet, and we followed it step by step — at least we thought we did. But needless to say, we ran into a few problems here and there, which led to some frustration and puzzlement, and eventually to some yelling and kicking at a crooked frame that had been oh so carefully measured, and then some more yelling and stomping and unmentionable mumblings before things settled down. Finally, however, after much perseverance and some ingenuity, the bottom of the door was finished and proudly hung upon its hinges. And the top half of the door and a subsequent shutter for a windowless window beside the door turned out even better. We felt very proud of our accomplishments. We also learned something amidst this project, for as I was stomping and hollering and kicking, I uttered these words: "No wonder those construction workers we know swear so much!"

At the time, this utterance broke the tension of the moment, and we both had a good laugh. Later, however, it made us each consider Jesus' words not to judge others. So often, it is so easy to be judgemental of other people's words and behaviours, and yet, no one really knows what that person is going through, what struggles they have already overcome, or what burdens they may be bearing. Only Jesus knows the real truth of the matter, and only He is fit to judge each and every one of us.

Yes, when I set out to build my Dutch door project, I assumed that I would learn a few new tricks of the carpentry trade, but obviously, God had another lesson for me in mind as well. And I'm glad that He did.

Prayer: Father God, thank You for the little reminder lessons that You bring into our lives amidst other projects that we are involved with. Help us this day to be compassionate and humble within our spirits that others might experience from us the same type of love and acceptance that we receive from You moment by moment, day by day, through Jesus Christ our Saviour and Lord, in Whose name, we pray. Amen.

About the author:

Lynne Phipps <lynnephipps@hotmail.com>
Atlin, British Columbia, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Wonderful!


    I’m sure I’ve been there and done that.


    Hi Lynne – thank you for the Dutch door ‘episode’ – made me smile at how many times I have done the same thing.


    Hi Lynne;
    Very good devotional; made me look at myself and how I have been judging my mother.


    Great devotional Lynne; a little suspenseful too as many of your stories! I noticed your message ties in perfectly with the first few verses in Romans 2 – a good reminder to be careful of judging others.
    Blessings.


    Thanks for an entertaining devotional and the little message attached. Now if you had my father-in-law you would have had in no time a precision made and French- polished door in no time.
    Blessings.


    Dear Lynne, What an excellent devotional. This is a keeper and one to read more than once. I have a folder of your devotions..that is how much I treasure them.
    Keep writing and God bless you, a very talented person. Is there anything you can’t do once you set your mind to it?


    Lynne, Your devotional brought to mind the many projects that I have tried to accomplish in my lifetime. Getting the tools together and plowing ahead was, for the most part, a challenge. Thank you for bring back memories of enjoyable times of accomplishments.
    God bless.


    Oh Lynne, I enjoy your devotionals so much! Thank-you for sharing this one today. Continued blessings and insight on all your future carpentry projects. Just a thought, I wonder if Jesus experienced the same frustrations during His days as a carpenter.


    Hi Lynn
    Really enjoyed your devotional on being “judgmental.”
    I belong to a Bible study group, especially for those outside the church. It is just for women, they may bring their children. The babies are cared for in the nursery and the 3-5 year olds go to “story hour.” It is a great way for young moms to get a break from the kids and share God’s love with other women. I would like to share your devotional with them in the near future. It is a story we can all relate to.
    Blessings.

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