Under Construction

Hardwood Pile
Photo taken by Mandy Sweigart-Quinn

On May 8, 2020 I purchased a house; however, sometimes things are not as they appear! The house is currently under construction which means that Nathan, PQ and I are staying at my dad’s. Nathan and I painted the upstairs and I will be honest, marital harmony necessitates a painter! I do not like spending money; however, I dislike arguments even more! We are replacing all the flooring in the house. I have tremendous appreciation for those who work in flooring! I pried up most the hardwood floor and moved that stack of wood more times then I care to count before it finally found its resting place on the deck. Nathan will take care of busting up the tile, thank God!

Over the past month I have really meditated and found comfort in the fact that Jesus is preparing our heavenly homes (John 14:1-6). Whatever our homes look like I know two things: they will be clean and they will be perfect!

This world is under construction. I want to make it known that I stand with and support my black and brown brothers and sisters who are peacefully protesting racial injustice. I hate racism! I have absolutely no tolerance for people, especially from those who profess to be Christian who discriminate others based on the color of their skin. I have traveled and worked in many different countries. I have experienced first hand what it is like to be the only white person someone has ever met. I am VERY sensitive to make sure that the people I meet in life do not feel like outsiders.

Before I met Nathan, there was a man named Cecil who very much wanted to marry me. Cecil is a wonderful and godly black man. I grieved when Cecil and I came to an end but sometimes God closes doors. I have nothing but love and respect for Cecil and God used Cecil to prepare me for Nathan. I will be honest that some people did not like that Cecil was with a white person. I also had a married couple in my life that did not approve. My response to the them was: “are you saying it would be better for me to be with a white atheist then a black Christian? You are wrong and may God convict you of your small minded, faulty, segregated and racist thinking.”

I would love dear reader if you would ask yourself that same question. If you find that you are more offended by your child, sister, niece, brother, etc. dating or marrying a Christian of a different skin color, than dating or marrying an atheist with the same skin color, I pray and implore the Lord to purge that unbiblical, ungodly, evil way of thinking from you! Unequally yoked has everything to do with one’s spiritual condition not their skin color!

I have no clue why God made me white while another person black or brown. What I do know is that God is a color creating God whether that be in the form of a sunrise, flower or one’s skin color. Another thing I know is that all of us are under construction. All of us are a work in progress. All of us are in need of the Holy Spirit to convict us and purge us from the errors that we have in our thinking.

The Kingdom that is coming has no room for looting and destruction. That is the work of the devil not God. I am so thankful that in Heaven God will wipe away our tears, hurts, pains. The work that we are doing on our physical house is overwhelming and exhausting; however, the end product will be worth it. The work that God does in us is often painful and unenjoyable, but produces joy and richness when we look back and reflect on His working in our lives.

Dear reader, may you take some time today to meet with our Triune God. May you ponder how the Lord has you under construction. May you ask Him to reconstruct, remodel or take away any beliefs that do not align with Him and His Word. May we be a body of believers who seek His Kingdom above all else.

Father God, thank You that all of us are under construction in some way, shape or form. Lord God, I ask for You to purge from us any spirit of segregation, racism or classism that exists in believers hearts. Lord God, thank You that this earth is NOT our home. Thank You that You are preparing our future homes. Remind us that we are a people in the world but not of it. Lord God, help us to be a people who seek unity in our diversity and to place You and Your will above any form of personal pride or self-ambition. Lord God, may we be reminded that You are a color creating God whether that be in a sunrise, a sunset or a person’s skin color. May we see color as a gift and not something to exploit, weaponize, demonize, oppress or reject. Holy God, help us to grow in our love and devotion to You and to each other. In Jesus’s Name I pray. Amen.

 

Published by

Blue Collar Theologian

My name is Mandy Sweigart-Quinn, I live in Lancaster, PA and I am a “Blue Collar Theologian.” I love Jesus! I am passionate about His Word (The Holy Bible)! I come alive when I can encourage others in their walk with Jesus (whether by writing or speaking). As a “Blue Collar Theologian” it is my aim to live/practice/work out my Christian hope with sincerity, authenticity and genuineness. As a “Blue Collar Theologian,” I strive to meet people right where they are (“Incarnational Theology”). I graduated in May 2019 from Capital Seminary and Graduate School with a Master's in Biblical Studies. I am a passionate, excited and enthusiastic person! I love flowers, sports and sunsets. Since January 2, 2018 I have had the privilege of being married to Nathan.

53 thoughts on “Under Construction”

  1. What an excellent post Mandy thoughtfully written. We are all under construction in God’s Kingdom, in my case longer than others. I really get excited thinking of what the finished me will be like, no more temper tantrums praise the Lord! No one this side of eternity can afford to judge, we have enough problems of our own to deal with. Praise Almighty God, our Father, He has it all under control. God bless you Mandy.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi, Alan! Thank you SO much for taking the time to read this! I will be glad to be free of my temper tantrums as well!!!! I am glad that God has it all under control. More and more I do not understand how people face the day without faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Love and blessings to you and your wife! How are things across the Pond?!

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  2. Wow, well said and prayed, Mandy! Honestly, I don’t know where to start, so many points. Here goes, true, we are the Triune GOD’s work in progress; left in our devices, we tend to regress. We are constantly grateful and in need of our Savior JESUS CHRIST. Marraige is a divine providence, a gift from GOD the FATHER; as some ended as protestant/evangelical celibates. The human heart requires the HOLY SPIRIT’s intervention/conviction or it tends to be dark where racism, anger, prejudice, and all forms of hate and destruction exist, among others. Heaven will be the best home where none of these social ills exist. Christians, who are engaged in either political spectrum (wait, is ideology a form of idolatry?), may hate each other here but they will be the best of friends when they meet each other in heaven as elected by GOD as His own. And building a house, wait, a home is fun specially if it is tuned as such. I’m not so sure if I’m making sense. 🥱 Good night for now. 😴💤

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi, Kent! Thank you SO much for reading this and for sharing your thoughts!!! I look forward to God healing our hearts and national and racial divisions in Heaven with His healing balm. I am thankful for you! Blissful and peaceful slumber my friend!!!

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  3. Absolutely to the point! I heard Author/Pastor Tony Evans talk on Fox News this morning and he said that what we need in this country is not band-aids for what is wrong – meaning the pandemic and the protests, but people repenting of their sin and seeking God. Evans calls to the CHURCH to gather together in high numbers and different areas to show our repentance and to publicly ask God to help and heal our land. God promises to heal us if we will seek His face and turn from our wicked ways. God bless you and all your readers!

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  4. Nicely put, Mandy. Racism is not a skin pigment issue, it’s a heart issue. Heart transplant is just what the doctor orders. Congrats on the house. I know it’s a lot of work, but do worth it. Memories will be built there. I want them to be sweet ones for you. God’s grip – Alan

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    1. I absolutely love you Alan! Racism is truly one of the biggest heart/sin issues plaguing us today. I will not attend an all white church. Heaven will not be all one color! Few things stir my heart like worshiping with other brothers and sisters who are different than myself! It grieves me that the 11 o’clock hour is still the most segregated hour in the USA. Christians are to be known for their love and I pray that God reveals to me/us where we are refusing to show love to people are different than ourselves. I struggle with ministering to homeless men regardless of the person’s race or ethnicity. I know this is WRONG. Little by little God is working on my heart. I am not excused from this post. I am also a child of the Most High God who is under construction! Again, I absolutely love you Alan and I am praying for you!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Yet…… don’t be too hard on yourself. We are born with the sin of the racist seed. Sure, you will feel it creep up on you at times, but the power comes from what you do in that moment of recognition. Can we chat here? Okay, here goes. When I was about 19, I felt a huge attraction toward a co-worker. In fact, we flirted a bit, had lunch together on a break, but never actually dated. There was a shame I fought deep inside which eventually kept me from asking her out on an official date. She was raised in Memphis and after only 6 months of getting to know her bit by bit, she decided to move back to Memphis where her family was & attend school there. I somehow felt I missed the boat while it was in dock. I recall our final goodbye the day before she moved away. I felt she was fighting her emotions just like I was. After somber words were over we both stood there with hesitation. Her eyes teared up, but they never met her cheeks. Just seeing that hurt my heart. I bit my bottom lip, reached for her, and held each other for longer than I expected…in the middle of a mall where we worked. After the embrace, I reached down to clinch her hand. I looked into her eyes and told her if she ever came back for a visit she knew where to find me. She sheepishly smiled, looked down at the floor and nodded, knowing she probably never would visit Dallas again. I gently let go of her hand, fighting the kiss we both wanted, and turned to go our separate ways. She was black. My family would’ve never approved, in fact I probably would’ve been disowned by some. I had the feeling she was in the same spot with her folks in Memphis. To this day I scratch my head often about those times with her. One thing was certain, although the attachment was real, I still felt uneasy way deep down. It very well could’ve been the fear of losing my mom, my grandparents, my uncle’s and aunts, etc. On the other hand, maybe I held back because of a deeply seeded stirring of separatism planted within. As the years rolled on I have been able to better recognize that part of my upbringing. Like you, I have many friends who are of almost all races & most are in the congregations I attend. Still, I think of my friend from the mall to this day and smile.

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      2. Alan, you are AMAZING! Thank you for sharing your story. You have a beautiful and kind heart! It’s humbling to see how God weaves each story with its joys, scars and wounds and makes something beautiful with it. Alan, your comments are always welcome! Lots of love, hugs and blessings to you and your family!

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  5. Mandy, I hear you! When I first started dating my husband, all his friends were black. Two of his friends and Rick and I formed a quartet. At that time there was a TV show called “The Mod Squad.” We called ourselves “The God Squad.” Pretty soon we were getting asked to sing many different places throughout the city, and some people said we sounded like a choir.

    When Rick and I decided to get married, he asked his best friend, who was black, to be his best man. We got a lot of flack on that one from other Christians. We were told he would “spoil our wedding photos.” So, what you said reminded me of this for I was like, “So, he should have a white guy who is not his best friend be his best man just so he doesn’t spoil our wedding photos?” No way!

    The other female in our quartet played the organ for our wedding and her mom took our wedding photos. They were/are mixed race. And, we had black and mixed race people attending our wedding, too. The other female from our quartet is still our best friend, and we just spent the last two years with her and her husband.

    Two of my nieces have married black men as have some of my cousins’ children, and my oldest granddaughter may be marrying a black man, as well. So, racial mixture has been in my life most all of my life and is a part of my family. So, I do understand first-hand some of the injustices they have faced just because of the color of their skin, so I am not without empathy.

    But, I do believe there is a political agenda at play here with all of these protests, and that it is all leading up to the fulfillment of prophecy of Scripture with regard to the last days before the return of Christ. What I believe this is heading towards is a change in our society that will bring about the persecution of Christians as they move to unify all people and to breakdown all that divides us as the people of this earth. For, that will necessitate everyone compromising their beliefs in order to unify with the rest of the world. So, just a heads up that there is more at play here than just people asking to be treated fairly. Love you much!! Sue

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thanks for this heartfelt post, Mandy! In the past couple of weeks we’ve seen sin at work via racism and the subsequent violence and destruction. I’m 63 years old so I can remember back in the 1960s when racism was pretty blatant. George Wallace was a third-party presidential candidate and interracial relationships were strictly taboo. I’m half Polish and “dumb Polak” jokes were the rage throughout the country in the late 60s and 70s, only minor bigotry in comparison but still very hurtful. It’s shameful that the church in America perpetuated bigotry and segregation.

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    1. I absolutely agree that it’s shameful that the church in America perpetuated bigotry and segregation! I pray for racial reconciliation in the church. I will not attend an all white church as Heaven will not be all white. I LOVE worshiping with believers from other cultures! Love and blessings to you and Corrine! How is your study on Romans?!

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      1. Thank you, sister! Love and blessings to you and Nathan! We are really enjoying (big understatement) our nightly half-hour with Martyn Lloyd-Jones as he expounds on Romans. What a joy!

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  7. So beautifully put, Mandy! Yes, indeed, we are all under construction. May we humble ourselves before the Master Builder and allow Him to continually reshape us into His image. May our hearts align with His and with one another. And so excited to read of the house! I remember well those challenging, marital-stretching days! It’s lots of work indeed! But, also a thrill like no other shaping something of your very own. Blessings and prayers for the process! ❤

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  8. You are most welcome! Yes, we have been able to finally meet in person again since we are a small enough group. It’s been so wonderful to see them. Their hearts are definitely heavy over Pastor Don, as all of ours are. But, so proud of their strength.They are such prayer warriors. Thank you so much! ❤

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  9. Amen!!!!
    Loved this post, Mandy and the reminder to do heart checks frequently and when necessary, set an appointment for a heart surgery.
    PS: I love when someone says brown people/babies -it gives me delight 💐

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  10. Wow didn’t know you were in an interracial relationship before; sad to hear how some time some people can have a hard time with multi-ethnic marriage/relationship. I’m in a multi-ethnic marriage myself. Hope the house gets fixed, awesome post.

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    1. Hi, Jim! Thank you for reading this I appreciate it! I value your opinion and if this post was not helpful in promoting dialogue then I wanted you to tell me. In the event you’re interested in knowing I met Cecil when I was working at the National Rehabilitation Centre in Sierra Leone. At that time Cecil applied to continue his Physiotherapy/Osteopathic studies in the UK. Cecil and I were a multi-racial, cross-cultural, international relationship. I had to travel back and forth from the US to the UK in order to spend time with Cecil and his family in the UK. I totally understand the challenges people face with US visas and immigration. I thought after Cecil and I came to an end that I would be single for forever. I was single for five years before I started to get a bit restless and discontented with being single so I made a spiritual goal for God to prepare me for my future husband or to remove the desire from me and replace it with His peace and contentment. Well, God arranged Nathan and I to meet and the rest as they say is history. Jim, I am praising God for you and your family!!!

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      1. Hey, Jim! I feel like I need to say this. Cecil and I came to an end because we both knew we were not going to make the UK our home. In my mind that left either him coming to the States or me moving to Sierra Leone, which I was willing to do. God can’t use people who are unwilling to make decisions/step out in faith so ultimately God closed the door. I wanted it to be known that Cecil and I did not end on bad terms or because of politics! In June-July 2017 I went on a trip school trip to Jordan and Israel. On that trip I met a couple, Brian and Jessica who were missionaries to Mormons in Idaho. Long story short, I went to visit Brian and Jess. They had a friend who was having a hard time and asked if they could invite this person to dinner. I said, “sure!” Well, the person they invited was Nathan. I heard a little about Nathan when we were on our trip and that he recently retired from the Army so I had a bit of an idea of who was coming for dinner, unlike Nathan! Brian and Jess were NOT trying to set us up at all; however, it appears God had other plans! Thank you SO much for asking! I love sharing our story!

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  11. “May we see color as a gift and not something to exploit, weaponize, demonize, oppress or reject.” AMEN, Mandy. It is painful to watch that gift being trampled. I pray God can take the broken pieces and mend us back together, stronger than before!

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