On my recent trip to Great Britain, I noticed that London was filled with huge cranes. High rise buildings were under construction everywhere! And around each of those structures was a labyrinth of steel platforms and piping. Clearly the engineers wanted to make sure that the workers had maximum safety conditions in which to do their work.
Those images brought back some powerful memories of a trip I took to Thailand years ago. I was visiting a school that was expanding and they were building a new wing on their property. As they were working on a third story, scaffolding was required around the first two floors.
But that scaffolding was made of bamboo. The bamboo sticks were held together by light rope crisscrossed around the joints. I remember thinking how dangerous the work conditions were. That piping wouldn’t hold up two men, much less an entire work crew.
Truth is, any progress, any building project requires scaffolding. A new wing, a new floor, an expansion of some sort needs support. And so do believers. As we progress in our spiritual lives, we too need lots of good, strong scaffolding to help with the process.
So where do we get that scaffolding?
Think about it. In our culture, we have things like radio stations that stream wonderful music and programming to help us grow and make wise choices as we learn to serve the Lord. We can develop our own play lists of songs that inspire and encourage us. We can benchmark programs that inform our spirits and follow teachers and preachers who speak to our hearts.
At our fingertips, we have volumes of spiritual material. We can readily refer to old and new commentaries that will help us understand God’s word. We can flip through translations until we finally “get” an understanding of a difficult passage.
We can read and reread books that enlighten our souls. Videos are readily available on most subjects. There are videos for kids, teens, moms, dads, families and the church as a whole. Small groups of young adults can watch a presentation together and then have lively discussions based on that material.
Scholarly classes are offered by Christian colleges to feed the inquiring minds of some. International mission agencies provide a wide array of short-term experiences to help folks get involved with what God is doing around the world. As we are “being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood…” (I Peter 2:5), there is ample Godly scaffolding all around.
So, this week, let’s take some time to check the “scaffolding” that is surrounding us. If it is mostly useless “entertainment” let’s make some changes. Let’s shore up the effort and place some substantive material around us. Order a book, watch a video, tune into a radio program or sign up for a class. We need the help and it is readily available!