Building Your Fixer Upper

I recently moved to Collingswood NJ, into a cute little cottage with an outrageously funny and kind roommate. About 4 months after we moved, there was a major pipe issue concerning the sewage, yikes! After a late night of cleaning, a week of phone calls (and I am not going to lie, a few tears) the issue was resolved and we did not have to fear that sewage was going to stream through our downstairs. This made me so appreciate renting, like for real, and made me realize that I could not pull off doing what Joanna does from Fixer Upper because the moment an issue would arise I would be out.


Being part of a fixer upper may not be what I want to do with my life but it sure is who I am. A couple of weeks ago I was reading and a scripture jumped out to me.

Deuteronomy 32:9 says, “For the Lord’s portion is His people, Jacob His anointed inheritance.”

This is saying that we are God’s portion, as if we each are a plot of land with a house that represents all we are, all that we have lived and all that has been passed down to us.

In my head I want to a beautiful white little cottage, all fixed up and pristine and only a couple of years old so that there are no pipe issues (LOL). In reality I am true to the word fixer upper. When God “inherited” us He got all the baggage. We not only have our stuff but generations upon generations of things that have been built up in our lives. We have struggles, broken habits and mindsets and so on that we have passed down through our lineage and God gets and WANTS it all.

We are more like the houses that Joanna and Chip redo then we ever really knew. The wonderful part is that if you are a believer, your foundation is unshakable and unmovable because it is built on the solid rock of Jesus. But what use is a house if the foundation is good and everything else is falling apart? That is why God wants to be invited into the rebuilding and redecorating process.

You may be like yes Jenica, I am very aware of the hot mess that I am, thanks for the reminder. Let me just stop you for a moment - who isn’t a hot mess? David, Moses, Peter, Paul...the Bible list goes on and guess what they allowed God to use them within their mess. They allowed God in.

I think so often we don’t allow God to see our mess because we are afraid. We are aware of perfection but also aware that we cannot achieve it so we feel emotions such as guilt and shame. But I want to bring light to that dark place. From a human perspective when something goes wrong in your house who actually gets extremely angry at the house for the broken pieces in it? When our pipe broke I didn’t go about kicking my house, screaming at it, giving it the silent treatment. No! I assessed the situation, cleaned it up, and went about getting it fixed. Daughter of God, He is not mad or angry at you for all that your house encompasses. He truly wants to make you whole and it requires some fixing up.

Can you imagine with me that you are this beautiful old house that finally has allowed this well known architect/interior designer/carpenter in, to bring spaces back to life. With a bounce in His step, He walks around freely and discusses with you the dreams and visions He has for every inch of the space. There is no anger in His tone when you both face the disheveled and clearly forgotten areas, just love and excitement to be involved in the redecorating process.

What if every day we could have this perspective and allow God to focus on a piece of us? What if we invited Him in to truly live out 2 Corinthians 5:17

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

The end goal would not be perfection but allowing what was always intended to be new, to actually be NEW. This wholeness would reflect the “style” of God and allow people to enjoy and rest when they are in the presence of their “house”. What if we really allow God to work in our lives, in His timing, for His purpose and without our guilt and shame. This would change the term Fixer Upper completely for us, and I think I am okay with that.