Bethany Dillon

Just another weblog

Building April 13, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — bethanydillon @ 2:36 pm
Tags: , ,

I haven’t ever really read The Message Bible much. The times I have read it are when it’s quoted in a book or sermon… but never really picked it up for myself. I think it’s an awesome thought to put Scripture in modern-day Western language, but most of the time, I’m more impacted by other translations… I think my Bible is ESV? Not that that matters. I’m on a rabbit trail now. : ) All of that to say, it was really strange to me the other day when I saw The Message New Testament and Psalms & Proverbs on the bookshelf and felt a quickening in me to pick it up. I sat up on our barstool in the kitchen with my decaf coffee, and opened to Psalm 127.

A Pilgrim Song of Solomon

1-2 If God doesn’t build the house, the builders only build shacks.
If God doesn’t guard the city,
the night watchman might as well nap.
It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late,
and work your worried fingers to the bone.
Don’t you know he enjoys giving rest to those he loves?

3-5 Don’t you see that children are God’s best gift? the fruit of the womb his generous legacy?
Like a warrior’s fistful of arrows are the children of a vigorous youth.
Oh, how blessed are you parents, with your quivers full of children!
Your enemies don’t stand a chance against you; you’ll sweep them right off your doorstep.

It still moves me to read that, days later. I heard His voice in it… to me. In ten short weeks, a sweet little girl named Lucy is going to be here, and I will be tangibly walking in every word of this Psalm. It’s useless for me to try and build my own thing, hold my own thing together, guard it with my life. When I was reading and meditating on those first verses, a wave of thankfulness came over me… but He IS the builder of our house. He IS the One guarding it.

“Don’t you know He enjoys giving rest to those He loves?” — I’m hanging that on the wall of Lucy’s room somehow. I will need to be reading that often.

His “generous legacy” … His “best gift”. The ESV translation of that verse is, “Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward.” (v. 3)  Powerful. Powerful promises. How often does our culture paint the coming of children as an inconvenience and even a detour from our REAL purpose and potential? What lies have we been told! They are a legacy, a gift, a heritage, a reward from Him. Quite a different picture, huh?

Since reading that, my mind has been in that place. My heart’s been dwelling on how He builds a house, how He creates heritages, legacies, stories through us. Lucy’s birth, and the birth of my sister-in-law Marla’s daughter Anna in a few days, and my nephew Cohen’s birth, are a part of His story/legacy/heritage… the building and expanding of His Kingdom. Wow.

The thought (I’ve got a sneaky suspicion it came from Him) came to me this morning as I was reading Psalm 127 again … yes, He is building “our” house, as far as Shane & I’s family. Yes, He’s building us, we’re built on His foundation. But, just like I may have sixty more years at best, Lucy (and her brothers & sisters in the future) isn’t going to live forever, and neither will her children, nor her children’s children. Our “house” is so, so, so temporary. The reality is, it’s being built in the shadow of a house that can’t pass away, in a Name stronger and longer-lasting than Barnard. In the unmatchable Name of Jesus, He’s building (through us and myriads of other generations and families) His Kingdom.

Sunday morning I was reading an old entry in my journal and came across a morning I was in Matthew 13, reading all the different parables Jesus used to describe the Kingdom. A sower’s seed, a tiny mustard seed growing into a large tree, leaven in three measures of flour, the treasure hidden in the field, a pearl of great value, etc. I just wrote them out in a list, and noticed while I was re-reading them… they all are pointing to something hidden, or at least something that needs to be revealed.

Do we want to know what the Kingdom of God looks like? What our stories in it look like? … it can only be revealed.

Like seed going into the ground and sprouting and bearing fruit in due season.

Like a tiny, insignificant mustard seed going into the ground, dying, and growing larger than any of the other garden plants.

Like leaven hidden in flour, making it rise and expand over time.

Like a treasure hidden in a field, that when a man finds it, he realizes its worth enough to go and sell all he has in order to buy that field.

Like a pearl of great value, that when a merchant finds it, goes and sells all he has in order to buy it.

I’m just… encouraged by that truth in this season of my life. I probably always will be. Like all of those other parables, the parable of my life will continue to unveil and reveal the worth of the King and His Kingdom in each new season. So, when I’m waking up numerous times throughout the night here in a few months, when I’m begging for Him to give us rest, when worry and anxiety grip my heart and I want to guard her and “my” house with all my might, I can remember: HE is the One building us, and guarding us. But more than that, beyond that, better than that, He is building His Kingdom, even in us, and revealing it.

He’s so good. He’s really, really good. I love Him and can’t wait to turn the page and see what the next parable in the Barnards He’s going to tell in order to point to His Kingdom. I can’t begin to imagine how beautiful the next one will be.


14 Responses to “Building”

  1. Amy Hillberg Says:

    Hey Beth!

    As I read your post, I kept being drawn to your statement about putting the verse from Psalm 127 on Lucy’s wall. As graphic designer and major word nerd, I couldn’t help but get a visual of these wall clings I’d seen in a friend’s home. They’re something like you’d find at

    If you’d like one custom-designed to match the colors (and appropriate size) of Lucy’s room, I’d be happy to design one for you as a gift. You could get it printed at any print shop near you that handles vinyl, then you just stick it on the wall. I used to help install them commercially – they’re so easy!

    Blessings to you and your growing family!

    • Amy- that would be AWESOME! I re-read your comment a couple of times to make sure I was reading what I thought I was reading… that would be so perfect! 🙂 Thank you!!! -Beth

  2. sarah Says:

    this post was particularly awesome for me to read because psalm 127 is what gets me and one of my friends through a lot.. it’s kind of “our verse” and she brought it up again a few days ago. so it’s reaffirming that we need to look into it by seeing it here 🙂 thanks beth!

  3. Ruth Says:

    =) Thanks for posting…
    I’m a student now at a competitive university, and it often feels like trusting our ‘houses’ to God and resting in Him is foolishness =T. Reading about Psalm 127 reminded me of my need to trust God with my gifts/abilities/passions. Perhaps it’s one of those lifelong lessons!
    God bless!

    p.s. =) thanks for sharing about the adventures of being a mom. It’s an encouragement to us single sisters that, should God grant us with the privilege, it’s something we can gladly enjoy.

  4. Miranda Says:

    I personally always use the KJV or the NKJV one. I just think that those are the most closely translated versions to the actual one written by Christ.

  5. Kate Says:

    It still amazes me how God finds little ways to communicate things to us…to reveal things about Himself that we don’t even know we’re seeking. I notice this a lot with your sisters blog. You both have such insight that truly ministers to my heart…thank you!

    P.S.-Blessing on you and Shane as you await the arrival of your precious little bean, Lucy!

  6. Becky Says:

    Hey Beth!

    My hubby and I are expecting our first baby, a boy, about a month before you. God presented us with this same scripture just about 2 months or so ago as well. We were so blessed by it. What a great plan God has and how awesome we get it to be a part of it. 🙂


  7. Hannah Says:


    Such a great reminder. My husband and I have two very young children. When our first was born I thought it would be so easy to be wrapped up in the responsibility to raise her to the glory and praise of God…but how quickly and easily reliance on myself took over was scary. It has become a struggle to be parents in and through God’s strength because it is exhausting to continually love and train even little ones in a way that is glorifying to our wonderful Lord…but oh, so worth it and I wouldn’t trade it for the world! Makes me admire my parents so much more for how seriously and diligently they worked to live out godly lives for us. So excited for you and Shane to welcome Lucy. It is overwhelming the love God puts in your heart for these precious gifts of a new life.



  8. Belinda Savage Says:

    Beth 🙂

    Thank you for those amazing words of wisdom, sometimes some of the parables confuse me and you explained them so simply. I really need to spend real time with the Lord and hear His voice.

    When I read the beautiful insight He gives you into His word and the lovely things you write it inspires me to get closer and be better.

    Blessings to you, Shane and Lucy and the rest of your fam:)

    I hope to meet you one day soon, if not on earth then at the glorious feast I long for with all my heart.


  9. Bethany H Says:

    Wow… this post came at just the right time. Psalm 127:1 has been a hallmark the last few weeks of the lessons He’s teaching me in this season. Thank you, Beth, for sharing your heart!! Such an encouragement!

  10. Tara Says:

    As a new parent of a week-old (an Easter Sunday baby!), I really appreciate this post.

  11. Callie Says:

    I just came across your blog, and this post was such a blessing to me. I don’t have children yet (I’m actually having some issues with fertility – you could say a prayer for my husband and me if you think of it), but it’s becoming increasingly astounding to me how in today’s culture having children is viewed so negatively! They ARE God’s best gift and legacy, and it seems that sometimes even Christians seem to forget that.

  12. Bethany, we met a while back when you played at Acoustic Jeremiah in Canton, GA. Since the show I have been following you on Twitter/Facebook, and I wanted to thank you for your honesty and inspiration. You are so “real”. I’ve been particularly interested in your Lucy updates since my wife and I were also expecting our first daughter (we have two boys also)! Well, Alyssa Grace arrived last weekend! She is an incredible blessing from God! Your post on Psalm 127 almost brought me to tears. It is SO true.

    Enjoy these pics of Alyssa! You will be holding Lucy before you know it! May God continue to bless you and Shane abundantly!

    Todd Cantrell

  13. SheryAnn Says:

    Hello Bethany I’m Shery Ann and we’re children of God! lol 😀

    Anyway just wanted to share how your enthusiasm to share what God revealed to you is super cool and encouraging as a fellow sister in Christ.

    Thanks for sharing about Psalm 127 it tweaked my own walk with Jesus. Verse one and two is super good like the vain part, it reminded me of my own quiet times with Jesus that everything I do has got to be because I love him. A verse that he’s been really whispering loud in my heart has been in John 14:15 “if you love me, you will obey what I command” that yea it is in vain to obey scripture and forget Jesus in that. In that the only reason I should be praying a lot and reading his word is to seek Jesus and get intimate with him. Woops sorry, haha your own enthusiasm to share your quiet time spurred me on but yea thought that you would enjoy this. But super stoked to have found this and now that Lucy is out. >.< I just started reading your blogs so i'm not quite there yet. Keep Seeking Jesus.

    Shery Ann

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s