The DIY Myth

I have a love affair with any home improvement show that teaches how to “do it yourself.” The abundance of DIY programs on television tells me that I am not alone. If I believed that I actually COULD do these things by myself, I would have a fabulous grotto-lined swimming pool in my backyard, a master bedroom closet fit for a Real Housewife, and shiplap covering the walls of my living room. I don’t even know what shiplap is, but Joanna seems to like it.

Alas, the reality of my ability to DIY is far less than what the massive HGTV construction crews can do. I did, however, spray paint a small baker’s rack in the wind recently, so there is that.

My thinking is grounded in FROG theology: Fully Rely On God. While I know that I have been given certain abilities to do certain things, my entire existence on this planet is due to God’s providence. The few abilities I have come from God. A reader was once offended when I made a similar statement a few years ago, thinking that I was taking something away from her. She had grown up to be very self-reliant and did not want to give God the credit for what she had achieved through her hard work and struggles. I maintain that God is the one who makes us able. We are nothing without him on earth, and achieving a place in heaven is certainly not something we can DIY. Remember, grace is the unmerited favor of God…you can’t earn your way in.

In the Message version of Romans 8, Paul encourages us to move away from the thinking that we have achieved something with our do-it-yourself lives and move instead to an understanding of the resurrection life that we have received from God:

Romans 8 (The Message)

12-14 So don’t you see that we don’t owe this old do-it-yourself life one red cent. There’s nothing in it for us, nothing at all. The best thing to do is give it a decent burial and get on with your new life. God’s Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go!

15-17 This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?”

I hope this fills you with excitement today! To be granted the opportunity to say to God, “What’s next?” is a true assessment of what we gain when we lose our lives to Christ. God’s spirit beckons us to new opportunities and adventures. We are invited to be adventurously expectant about our future. Indeed, God offers us a future with HOPE.

God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him!

So whatever you are going through right now, remember this; we are invited to fully rely on God and look ahead to the good times of a resurrected life with him. The only DIY part of this is for you to respond YES. God’s Spirit beckons you to a new life in him. What’s next, Papa?

DIY Dinner by Michelle Robertson

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