work in progress (the house… and us!)

First – if you didn’t read yesterday’s post about listening to family stories, I think you missed being challenged by an important idea. You can rectify the omission by clicking on Today is Never too Late; Tomorrow May Not be Soon Enough.

IMG_3639HOUSE: OK. Now for today’s thoughts. Rebekah and I are back in “house renovation” mode. We can only stand so much disruption at any given time, but the great room is fairly big and the entire downstairs smells of primer. Not only that, but Scout got her first summer hair-cut – so “beautification” is the theme across the board.

The painting project is going to run several days, and I promise to share more pictures when it’s finished. But the transformation is already huge because we’ve prepped and primed pretty much all the exposed wood. Real wood, not just veneer; solid wood; carefully milled wainscoting, crown molding, and trim.

IMG_3615It’s quite possible the folk who built this house would consider this a crime against wood. But we’re committed to introducing more light in any way we can, and the dark wood simply had to go.

Living in a house is a constant work in progress. Sometimes I wish all the renovations were done, and all that remained for us to do would be the “sit back and enjoy” part. But then I remember that it’s the journey that always grabs me, and that even the destination is typically one more way-station along the road of adventure.

It’s not that we’re constantly looking for improvement because we’re not satisfied; it’s more that we’re in the business of reinventing ourselves because we know that God always has so much more in store.

Scout thinks this is all very amusing
Scout thinks this is all very amusing

I don’t believe this house is a metaphor for our spiritual lives so much as it is a byproduct of our commitment to creativity, imagination, and growth – a commitment that is a natural part of what it means to be a follower of the Living Way of Jesus.

BIRDS: The bird photographs (below) are just a bonus. Rebekah and I are still learning our North Carolina piedmont varieties, and we sit at the kitchen table in wonder of God’s creative imagination, sometimes, watching such a wide and colorful variety feast at the feeders.

Enjoy – we certainly are – DEREK



Our home photography

derekmaul View All →

Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at, and there’s always something new in the works.

Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.

Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.

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