Skip to main content

lego church


saturday was a bit rainy around here.  and shannon had meetings at church in the morning, so it was just me and the boys and my inner bum reared his lazy head and i decided that we'd just stay in, stay in our pajamas, and play with legos.  at least until the college football games started.  we recently purchased an enormous bin of legos for $15, and so we've got an ample supply of little plastic blocks, enough that i can spend the day singing, "jack, jack, he's a lego maniac."  anyway, we had already started building a church, so saturday seemed like the perfect day for finishing the project.  so, equipped with pjs and coffee, i headed to the playroom with two short little guys with even shorter attention spans in tow, and started work on this puppy.  when shannon got home from her meeting she joined us.  the next thing we knew, jack was complaining he was hungry.  looking at the time for the first time all morning, we realized that it was now 1:15.  oops.  guess time flies when you're having fun!  we took a quick lunch break then returned to the construction zone.  i never even watched the college football.  we just built and built and built.  we had to laugh at ourselves along the way as we carefully designed the chancel and the communion rail, placing altar flowers and a bible on the altar, even taking care to add a little lego flame to the cross to deem it an official united methodist logo.  "church nerds," we called ourselves, snickering.  most people build spaceships or houses.  not us.  we build churches. 

and as i helped build a little miniature church brick by brick, i couldn't help but be struck by the obvious metaphor in my hands.  the song i remember from my childhood (its still in the umc hymnal!) kept going through my head: the church is not a building; the church is not a steeple; the church is not a resting place; the church is a people//i am the church.  you are the church.  we are the church together.  all who follow Jesus all around the world, yes, we're the church together.   (click here for the rest of the lyrics).  it couldn't have been more clear, what with me in my pajamas sitting in a sea of legos: the church is so much more than bricks.  its not the building that makes or defines or confines a church; it's the people.  its you and me.  we are, ultimately, the bricks that make up the church.  we are the real structure, the real mortar, the real "stuff" that the church is made of.  and if some are missing, then we are not complete.  there are holes in our wall, soft spots in our structure.  we need each member, each person in our community to be a present part of the church if we are to succeed in being a sturdy lover of our community, a church who is steady in goodness.  we need each person.  a church that is missing someone is like our lego church with a brick missing.  incomplete.  and a church that is more focused on its building than on its people, well, it's much like a plastic lego church: just a shell.

my heart breaks for churches with an edifice complex, whose buildings define them.  buildings, in the end, will come and go, much like our lego church will soon fall prey to two small boys who can't wait to unleash their inner demolitionists.  buildings will break and crumble.  but the church?  well, the church is something different.  Jesus said that even the gates of hades could not prevail against it. 

Comments

Emoly said…
I love it!!!! I love the brick work in the church. You captured the epitome of an UMC church. John Wesley didn't want fancy buildings, (I'm not even sure he wanted buildings period) and UMC are known for their common-place style architecture (thank you Vernacular Architecture class).

I have the Hallmark Ornament Collection of churches and every year when I put them out I find myself singing the same song! And how true it is. I've seen first hand what happens when the "church" forgets what it is really made of.
Megan said…
Wow - very impressed! I thought for sure you had found some obscure lego church kit, but no, you guys created that all on your own. You may have to start adding Lego Art to your Etsy shop!
Mary said…
is this for real? i am utterly shocked at this! so amazing! you can never get rid of that!!
that is amazing. seriously, is there no end to the talents in your family?
cathyq said…
Wow. I feel really bad now with the lame things I build for Jack! Good work everyone, but don't forget to feed my boys!
longge said…
There is no argument about the fact that replica handbags have over the years come to be perceived as 'special' in some mysterious way to many people - a charming fact, really - which makes replica handbags uk many lady's first choice of handbag in as far as they can afford them. But what exactly is it that makes the replica bags so special? It is its luxury and quality.
Anonymous said…
Hogan can also be purchased almost everywhere. There are a lot of distributors and retailers that stock all type of Hogan scarpe donna and should be readily available for you. Still if you cannot get your hand on a pair of Hogan scarpe uomo , you could consider buying them online from a lot of sites that stock these fantastic shoes.
Given that, Hogan uomo are not that expensive you should take time before choosing the shoes that you will be purchasing.

Popular posts from this blog

#thoughtsandprayers

i made these comments and prayed the following prayer at one of our worship services at SPWF yesterday, and had a few folks asked if i would post them, so there they are: 
It has been a season of terrible tragedy.  And I have noticed in the news a trending phrase: thoughts and prayers.  It even has its own hashtag on twitter and other social media, but net necessarily in a good way.  People are understandably tired of hearing about others’ thoughts and prayers, when that is only a thinly-veiled way of saying that our only obligation to those who suffer is a brief moment of silence, or nothing more than a tweet or public statement.  The truth is that, for those of us who follow Jesus, much is required when our neighbors suffer.  We are called to do justice where we can, to love kindness and mercy, and to walk with God through it all.  But let us be careful not to throw out the proverbial baby with the bathwater.  We are, as people of faith, those who know that prayer is not simply an em…

a divided tree

there is a tree in my back yard.  i'm pretty sure it's an oak tree.  at least that's what i think Shannon told me.  i don't know my oaks from my maples, my elms from my locusts.  to me, it's a tree: a corinthian column bursting up into life and glory.  full of sap and pulp and rings and bugs and cells pulsing with water and always reaching for something.  it is full of rhythm, reach and flourish then fall and die, and repeat. 

this particular tree, though, isn't of one mind. 

half of it's rusted orange leaves have given up their grip and surrendered -gracefully or not - to the pull of gravity and the threat of winter.  the north side of this inauspicious oak is just about bare naked, all sticks and straight lines, a skeleton of itself.  but the side that looks south is stubbornly resisting change.  no longer green, the leaves have compromised their summer vibrancy, but they are clearly not ready to concede death just yet. 

i feel like i can relate to this …

thankful right now

"if the only prayer you ever say in your life is 'thank you,' it will be enough." -Meister Eckhart

"thanksgiving is inseparable from prayer." -John Wesley

i've been thinking about gratitude quite a bit this week, and how to foster a thankful spirit in the midst of the barrage of bad news that for me is punctuated by yet another "breaking news" notification on my phone, interrupting the busyness of my day to rudely remind me that the world's brokenness knows nothing of limits or boundaries, not to mention my schedule or sanity.  still, the bad news keeps coming. 

i just scrolled through my most recent notifications just from the last few days and they contain phrases like "crimes against humanity," "57 million users hacked, but not reported," "alleged pattern of sexual abuse," and "extremely disturbing," just to name a few.  how am i supposed to be present at a staff meeting when my phone is buzzing …