Saturday, October 11, 2014
Several years ago, my mom gave me a roaster oven for Christmas. It was very useful to me, but last spring I collected sap and used the roaster oven to slowly cook it until it turned into syrup. For several days I diligently babied the thickening syrup anxiously awaiting the yummy treat. Unfortunately, when I wasn't present, some unknown "force" turned the heat up on the roaster to 400 degrees. It wasn't long until the syrup was charred to a 4'' thick black mass in the bottom of my roaster pan. And let me tell you, it seemed it was there to stay.
God has created you and I to worship. He's created us for something special and He loves our obedience as we do His will. The things He uses us to do or create are often times awesome and amazing, inspiring others in their walk with The Lord, building them up in their faith. We have a purpose and it is good. But sometimes an outside "force" comes in and wreaks havoc in a person's life. Sometimes that "force" is his own stubborn will. No matter the reason, the results are a mess, that seem completely hopeless to overcome. Often others give up on that person, writing him off with dismissive words that cut to the heart.
My roaster pan was charred and unusable for a long long time. It took much effort to scrape and chip away the charred sap. And when Paul and I got to the end of the chunks, the roaster looked irreparably damaged, as if the sap took the enamel completely off the pan in some places. So we set it aside, ready for the dump and I purposed not to chide myself too much. Paul comforted me with the affirmation that I could replace it. Then it rained, and the roaster pan sat with rain water in it for a good while. After a time I looked at it again to make sure it was a lost cause. What I saw was that more specks of sap had soaked off and I realized the enamel was good, and that there was still hope!
We've scrubbed every once in a while over the summer and today, as I was cooking apples, I decided to scrub it once again. To my delight, the pan is nearly restored! It's taken a while, but that's alright.
God knows our intended purposes. And when we mess up our lives it can seem completely hopeless. Some have even concluded that their lives aren't worth living anymore and they give up. But God never gives up. He can take our "charred mess" of a life and redeem it. Even when others give up, we must always remember that the end of the matter is in God's hands. So, even when someone seems to be a complete wreck, when someone seems to be a "hopeless cause", we MUST hold out hope that God can redeem that person.
Maybe you are one who's life is a mess right now. Maybe you are even thinking you are a lost cause. Maybe someone else has said as much. I'm here to tell you that God is in the redemption business. He is the great restorer of our souls and our lives. Though there may seem to be insurmountable issues, and maybe you believe you've gone to far, but God is able to scrape away the charred mess and restore you to perfect use. Sure it might be painful. Sure it will take some time. And no, you might not be usable while you are in your current state, but in time, and through the process of restoration, He will re-establish your faith and your footing so that you are once again the person He created you to be.
My roaster has some "character" now. It doesn't shine quite like it once did. But I can sure use it as much as I ever did. And I am ever so pleased to have it back.
I'm certain that the Heavenly Father is even more pleased when one of His children repents and seeks restoration with Him. Return to The Lord and wait patiently for Him to restore your life. He will do it.
2 Peter 3:9
"The Lord is not slow about His promises, as some would understand slowness. But He is patient with you, not wishing for anyone to perish, but for all to come to repentance."
"For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it."