Building Lessons from Lego
What can the popular construction toy Lego teach us about building up the church of Christ? Pastor Eugene Low sees several parallels, and here uses those colourful little bricks to illustrate some important principles for us as we seek to establish the church on a strong foundation.
My sons, Zachary and Iain, love playing with Lego. In April, we embarked on an ambitious project to rebuild all our Lego sets (around 35 of them), which had been deconstructed and disassembled.
The first step was to separate all the bricks by colour. After quite a bit of sorting, we had filled several containers with red, blue, green, yellow, orange, grey, black and white bricks. Step two: we found all the instructions for the various Lego sets.
Then we began to rebuild—brick by brick, part by part, set by set. It took us almost two weeks, but eventually the mess of variegated bricks was transformed into an impressive fleet of cars, trucks, boats and aircraft. We even had a yellow submarine. I thanked God for my two boys.
I share this vignette to provide a little window into our family life, and also because it is a homely metaphor for how I see our life together as a church.
As I put my hands to the plough with you, I would like to encourage us with three observations, gleaned from my family’s Lego exploits.
1. We build together
“Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” (Eph 4:15-16)
Like my family’s Lego building project, the task of making disciples is something that we do together. As followers of Jesus, we have all received the same commission from our Lord. We don’t all have to be doing the same thing, but we should be working towards the same goal: to make disciples of the nations.
We are not meant to go it alone. Neither does spiritual growth happen merely individually. We need one another in order to grow together. God has saved and gathered us into his people. Together, we are an embassy of God’s kingdom. Through our words and our life together as God’s family, we bear witness, unashamed, to the gospel’s saving power, and together we make Jesus known.
2. We build with the same instructions
“…The sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.” (2 Tim 3:15b)
My family needed the right instructions to build our Lego sets. Instead of building whatever took our fancy and fighting over Lego pieces, we followed the same instructions and worked together. Jesus, the builder of God’s house, has spoken clearly and definitively. Our unity is founded upon the word of Christ and His gospel. When we believe and live according to the same truth, we “attain to the unity of the faith” (Eph 4:13). God’s word must direct what we believe (our theology) and what we do (our life and ministry). As we listen to Scripture together, we will humbly submit our ideas, opinions, preferences, routines and traditions to the test of God’s word. The more we listen to God, the more our church will look like Him, and the less it will look like us. This strengthens our unity.
3. We build with joy
“We work with you for your joy, for you stand firm in your faith.” (2 Cor 1:24b)
If building toy models can be enjoyable, then how much more joy-giving is the awesome task of building the people of God! The charge to make disciples is a call for each of us to invest our lives in others, to tell them about Jesus and to help them grow to maturity in Him. As we build others up in Christ, their joy in our Saviour becomes ours as well.
Claire and I are grateful for the opportunity to serve with you all again, for we hold you affectionately in our hearts. Our desire is for GBC to continue to grow as a community on mission, displaying the glory and beauty of our Lord Jesus Christ through our words and life together.
Let’s build together with joy, according to God’s truth! May God help us to strive side by side for the faith of the gospel!
We are thankful to God for His gracious providence in allowing Ps Eugene to join our pastoral team earlier than expected on 23 June and we wish to take this opportunity to welcome him, Claire and their two sons, Zachary (left) and Iain, back into our midst.
This article also appears in the print copy of Grace News.