Who doesn’t like Fixer Upper?
That’s a rhetorical question. I’m arguing for the sake of point that men like to take a sledgehammer and demolish a non-load-bearing wall. Women love the same sometimes, and they get to add to it design, flowers, and happy family memory-making times.
The concept of home improvement shows revolves around finding an old home with good bones and putting in the time, money, love and effort to restore it.
Please know that those who claim the name of Christ are also in need of restoration. Each of us has been saved and secured by the work of Christ Jesus for us, but each of us falls into what the Bible calls “a trespass” now and again, and we need restoration. Let’s go back to Galatians for one more time in this series to read about the work of spiritual restoration.
 Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.  Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.  For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself.  But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor.  For each will have to bear his own load. (ESV)
Getting to the Heart:
No one restores broken-down saints like the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus sees beyond the brokenness to what is true in the life of the sinful saint. He sees the full potential of what He has done and will yet do. His finished work in the fallen believer will be glorious, beautiful and someday perfect! In the mean-time, Jesus chooses to use every one of His followers in the restoration work of a brother caught in any trespass.
Yesterday I mentioned that this work is for the “spiritual” (6:1). Remember, that has nothing to do with a higher spiritual status. It refers to the “mature,” who know they are nothing without Jesus, and in humility depend on the Spirit to be of use to the Master in the lives of other people. After all, they know they have been loved by Jesus, and they want to love others like that.
Jesus equips you with tools for the restoration process of a broken brother. Today I’ll mention 2 and on Friday the rest.
- Gentleness – Where have we seen this before? In the fruit of the Spirit. We studied the meaning of gentleness in another post in this series. Let’s redefine it. Gentleness is essentially self-forgetfulness. It’s not self-deprecation or speaking ill of yourself. It’s the fruit of Christ that helps you put yourself aside so you can humbly focus on the needs of someone else. You and I need this when we restore someone, otherwise we will be mad at being inconvenienced by someone else’s sin or fearful that the problem will overwhelm us. Gentleness is a quality that we need the Spirit to produce in us. It’s love, patience, kindness, faithfulness and self-control in action.
- Watchfulness – Whenever I watch a Fixer Upper episode, there’s one unwritten law that always comes up: there are hidden problems that will come up and cost an extra thousand dollars, at least. There’s a hidden cost in spiritual restoration too: your own sin problems come up during times of spiritual restoration. Your problems will appear like a bee-hive inside a wall! When you are called on to consider another above yourself you won’t like it. You’ll be tempted to be short-tempered, anxious or even prone to fall into the same sin you are trying to help the other get out of. Watch yourself, and count on your own sin showing up.
Tomorrow we’ll look at the final tools, but for now…
Let’s talk it over:
- Do you like to watch home improvement shows? How does a home improvement project compare to a spiritual restoration project?
- When have you experienced the help of someone else to restore you? Alternatively, how has the Lord used you in the process of restoring someone else?
Sovereign Lord, You see the end from the beginning, and You ordain the means. Thank You for investing in us not only to rescue us from the penalty of sin but also to restore us from the presence of sin in our lives. You do not run from big projects, for Lord Jesus You bore our sin burdens on the cross. Help us in love to bear one another’s burdens and to fulfill Your law. Amen.
Worship in Song:
Memory Passage: Galatians 5:22–24
 But the _____ of the _____ is _____, ____, _______, ________, ________, _________, ___________,  ____________, ____________; ______ such things there is no _____.  And those who __________ to ______ ______ have _______ the _____ with its _________ and __________. (ESV)