1 Peter, When I was a little girl

The Building Block

Come to him, a living stone, though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God's sight, and like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

For it stands in scripture: "See, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious; and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame." To you then who believe, he is precious; but for those who do not believe, "The stone that the builders rejected has become the very head of the corner." (1 Peter 2:4-7, NRSV)

"The building block (buil-ding block) that was rejected became the cornerstone of a whole new world."

I heard it on the "Christian" radio station in Williamsburg and recognized Noel Paul Stookey's voice from the Peter, Paul and Mary albums my daddy bought when I was a little girl. What possessed him to buy folk music I do not know, but I loved those albums and played them over and over again. When their music pops up in my iTunes, I feel I am listening to old friends singing directly to me.

"Building Block" went through me. I searched out the scriptures to which it referred. I sang it over and over again. I remember listening to that radio station more than I might have, because it was the only source I knew of for the song. I see myself in that suburban bedroom with the windows that were high and small in the fashion of the late 1960's, in a neighborhood so carefully carved out of woods to preserve nature that the trees felt oppressive.

When I am down and unsuspected
With a burden that does not show
I think what time has resurrected
And how the sun can make the water flow

I suppose it felt pertinent in the midst of my teenage angst. Passionate about God and boys, and not always in that order, struggling with relating to other girls, struggling to co-exist with my mother, sure I was misunderstood everywhere, I found my hope at church and in music, so music about Jesus was a winner. I wrote my own, and accompanied myself on the guitar. It may not have sounded good, and really, I am not being falsely humble, because I have no idea how it sounded to others, but it felt good to sing about Jesus, to sing about God. I felt like part of something.

To a disconnected teenager, a rejected savior meant everything. A misunderstood Jesus became the cornerstone of a whole new world.

5 thoughts on “The Building Block”

  1. I love when life leads us to the music that leads us to where we need to be/want to be spiritually. This morning I was listening to Matisyahu, an Orthodox Jew/reggae artist, and fell in love with a song I had never noticed before…I think I already have the words memorized! Thanks for a very timely post!

  2. (o)
    At about the same time, this verse was a comfort to another disconnected teenager: “If the world hates you, know that it hated me before it hated you.” John 15:18

  3. Sisterknits, what an amazing musical combination! I’ll have to look for his music.
    Oh, my, zorra.

  4. Thank you so much for your blog.. i was searching for the song the building block and your blog came up in a search. Thank you. I have now been able to purchase this from itunes..
    Kathleen

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