I think about the word restoration and it carries lots of ideas behind it. One of the first things I think of is restoring old furniture. My parents have done this many times before. They have taken an old vintage piece of furniture that had pain or stain and stripped it down to the bare wood and restored the finish. I’ve seen cars restored and in my business of real estate homes have been the most common restoration projects.
Restoration doesn’t always remove all the “character marks” otherwise known as scars. The scars are sometime repairable and at other times when it comes to furniture, they are left because they tell the story of the journey. Joel tells the story of a time when God’s people are restored. Check this out…23 So be happy, people of Jerusalem; be joyful in the Lord your God. Because he does what is right, he has brought you rain; he has sent the fall rain and the spring rain for you, as before. 24 And the threshing floors will be full of grain; the barrels will overflow with new wine and olive oil. 26 Then you will have plenty to eat and be full. You will praise the name of the Lord your God, who has done miracles for you. My people will never again be shamed. 27 Then you will know that I am among the people of Israel, that I am the Lord your God, and there is no other God. My people will never be shamed again. 28 “After this, I will pour out my Spirit on all kinds of people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, and your young men will see visions. (Joel 2:23-24; 26-28 NCV)
I can’t easily forget the journey that I’ve been on. I can pursue perspective though. I can’t easily forget the dark days of being fired, divorced or “kicked to the curb” but I have been restored. The Lord is in the “restoration business”. He restored hopeless and broken lives with hope and promise. He doesn’t simply give empty promises of eternal life – He gives abundant life here too!
I will probably have some “scars” from the journey I’ve been on, but they actually have become somewhat of a badge of honor because they tell a story of my journey with the Lord. I’m reminded of the work He has done in me for His glory – not mine. I’m reminded that He is the Great Physician and can heal my spirit as well as my body. Restoration can be painful, raw and leave me vulnerable, but I’m so much better having gone through that process than if I tried to take a short cut around it.Pressing On! Dwayne