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Monday, March 7, 2016

Discards and treasures

There are times when I am out and about, and I take notice of the large numbers of signs for garage and yard sales. I always see people flocking to those marked out spots, hoping to find that bargain or treasure they seek. It might not be that we are seeking anything in particular, but that we will discover one man's discards can become our treasure. In essence, what one man discards becomes the very thing another will re-purpose and through a process of reconditioning, it becomes new. The cycle of life for that object continues, but maybe not in the same form it once had served previously. In our own lives, we often discard some things such as thoughts and dreams, thinking we have no further use for them. It never ceases to amaze me when God takes what I have discarded as no longer of use in my life and makes something new from it! 

We put our hope in the Lord. He is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name. Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone. (Psalm 33:20-22)

Treasures today may become the discards of tomorrow in our eyes, but in God's eyes and hands they become something he can and will re-purpose again and again. Nothing is truer than when he takes a lesson learned earlier and now which we have kind of forgotten, making it appear new to us, but really re-teaching us the lesson afresh in our lives. When we put our trust in Christ we are counting on him knowing exactly what we need in life and when we need it. Those "discarded" or forgotten lessons are new treasures waiting to be discovered!

I heard a friend recount how he brought home a couple of what were considered to be discarded, no longer 'useful' items to their previous owners and then he went to work on them to restore their function and beauty. A discarded, non-functioning yard decoration was reconditioned and now serves as a prominent adornment in his own front yard. Chairs worn through by the years and elements, combined with salvaged wood from a discarded pallet became the central place to sit on their front porch. Discards became new. This is the essence of grace! What one thinks is "un-redeemable" is made new. What one thinks has a place only in the past becomes the means of present strength and purpose.

We may have sent some things to the place marked out as memory in our life, knowing it served a purpose at one time, but don't be surprised when God recycles those things into the present and brings something new from them. These may be the very things of strength and beauty we need for today! Discards becomes treasure in his hands. Forgotten becomes new when he shows us a new way of considering what we thought only served a purpose so long ago. Nothing is really new in our lives. It is simply re-purposed and renewed by his grace. Just sayin!