2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV 1984) "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!"
With furrowed eyebrows, my first impression and response was: "Nasty! These are disgusting! Can they ever look decent?"
Deteriorated, ruined, stained and damaged describe the state of our home's forty-eight year old worn out hardwood floors.
A lack of proper maintenance was obvious as we considered buying our present home.
Several black spots were deeply embedded in the grain of the wood and one, the size of a throw rug, seemed unlikely to ever be removed. These floors appeared beyond repair.
What did we get ourselves into? These floors look hideous! Do we really have the time to restore them? Is it even worth the effort?
The shear amount of work kept my husband sanding for sixteen hours. He powered the two main sanders while I knelt and handled two smaller ones for edges, corners and tough spots.
At 1:30am we called it quits.
After hours of clean up the next day, the wood sealant was applied followed by three coats of polyurethane.
Unbelievable! Now these floors shine and reveal their natural elegance. The comparison is night and day. Our red oak floors look brand new. I still stand and just stare at the magnificent beauty of these gorgeous hardwood floors.
The beauty of this woodwork could never be captured until proper care and restoration took place. It took time, energy and a skillful hand to produce such an outcome.
We are not much different.
Each of us have scars revealing a battered life; personal injuries leaving us bruised; we each commit a city dump size of sin marking us hideous; our lives reflect our experiences and can appear beyond repair.
Often, our impression on others would cause them to conclude we are hopeless. Thankfully, other people's views of us is not His. Christ concludes we are worth His time and energy. He desires to take our broken, damaged, ruined lives and restore them, making them new.
The key verse from 2 Corinthians 5:17 declares that if we are in Christ, we are a new creation; the old is gone, the new has come.
A Christian is a new creature; one who possesses not just a new name, but a new heart. Our old pattern of life is changed: our way of thinking, our beliefs, attitudes and actions. A new way of life controls us: godly thinking, biblical beliefs, christian attitudes and Spirit led living. Once a slave to sin we now become a slave to righteousness.
Christ did the work to renew us. His sacrifice is a gift of restoration. It's our choice to allow Him to work out the stains that hinder our reflection of Him. With the Master's skillful hand He smooths rough edges of selfishness, polishes abrasions of past failures, removes blemishes of insecurity and refurbishes hopelessness.
The process of restoration does not come with ease and comfort. Only a high powered touch can restore such hideousness. The beautiful outcome surpasses the difficulty of becoming more like Him. He restores our life of sin to a life of beauty.
Beauty restored is beauty redefined.
Beauty redefined comes through the redemption of Christ and His work within us; a daily surrender of self to accept His touch. Embrace God's desire to refinish your life and shape you into His likeness. He believes you're worth every drop of His blood.
Comment below on the beauty God is currently bringing to fruition in your life.
Make a list of the evidences of God's work in your life and how He has enabled you to grow through difficulty and overcome sin. Praise Him for this and ask Him to continue to restore even more beauty in your life, for His glory.
What evidence is there that you are a new creation in Christ?
What are your rough spots? What is God striving to work out of you? And, in you?
Why is the process of restoration difficult? Why is it worth it?
Heart Changing Word:
Romans 6:20 & 22 "When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the control of righteousness. . . But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life."
Ephesians 2:10 "For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."
Philippians 1:6 "He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."
Copyright 2012 by Hester Christensen. All rights reserved.
Nice to have an inspirational blog.. I link you to my blog list can you link me too..? thank you...! God bless you..!ReplyDelete
Thanks for your comment; I appreciate your encouragement. ;)
I followed your blog thru Google and Networked Blogs and also subscribed, so you should show up now on my sidebar whenever you post something. ;)
God bless you, Hester ;)
Hi Hester! Again, Wow! That is all I can say!!! I am feeling very ugly in my heart right now as I wrestle....I need to remember that God is going to use this time in my life to make me more beautiful for HIM! I am going to be like your floors when this season passes...That is the truth I am claiming. Thank you Hester! You inspire me so much!Delete
Rogne Family, :)Delete
Thank you for your encouragement. I am humbled by your love to me. I am praying for you as God does His work in you, to refine, to refinish, to reflect His glory for His kingdom. :)
Love, Hester :)
Hi Hester! Great post as usual. Praise Him for helping me to live for HIS standard and not the world's or even how I feel that day! For me, focusing my mind and eyes on the cross each moment and not my "wishes" gives me strength and purpose. thank you dear!ReplyDelete
Thank you so much! I always appreciate your feedback. You are so right that we need to focus our mind and eyes on the cross each moment and to live for HIS standard! Good word sister,Delete
Love, Hester ;)
I LOVE your new picture and layout, not that the old one wasn't great too, but this one is fabulous as well! As always, I love your words and I especially love the "beauty" perspective and the reminder of being made new. X'sReplyDelete
Stacy! :) It is so good to hear from you sister. Thank you for your compliment regarding the improvements on my site. There are still a few things we are working on.Delete
I really appreciate your encouragement to me - you have blessed me so much.
Love to you sister,
Hi Hester! Loved your guest bloggers, but so happy to see you back in the groove!ReplyDelete
As for the beauty God is currently bringing to fruition in my life: I'm praying for certain character traits as I age. I turn 50 this year, so I'm thinking about the kind of "old lady" I want to be. First and foremost, I want to be sweet and gracious. He is smoothing some rough spots and (hopefully!) refining me to be more loving, more positive and more encouraging.
Have a great weekend!!
I appreciate your faithfulness to comment on my blog - you have encouraged me greatly!
I appreciate you sharing with us how God in bringing beauty to fruition in your life. Your honesty about your struggles encourages me to know I'm not alone in this. ;)
God bless you sister,
Love, Hester ;)
Evenin' sister Hester,ReplyDelete
This was so rich for me. I see His hand over my head right now, anointing me with oil, telling me to rest and ask Him all my questions. My favorite line that you wrote was,"His sacrifice is a gift of restoration". I love seeing how He restores His children to Him! Thank you so much for sharing! Congrats on the "new" wood floor! :) ~ Blessings to you and yours, Amy
Bless your heart - I understand the "rest" thing; God has been working rest in me throughout this year since our move. :) Thank you for your comment and your encouragement.
God bless you sister,
Love, Hester ;)
Hi Hester! LOVE~LOVE~LOVE!! Your new blog update and your gorgeous pic!ReplyDelete
The beauty that God is bringing to fruition in my life...is that HE loves me without regardless of my "doing!" One of these days, I am going to get this-LOL! Your new wood floor sounds gorgeous! Thanks for a great post!
You are so sweet! Thank you so much for your encouragement regarding my blog etc. ;) We are still working on a few things; thank you for your kind words.
I appreciate your comment and the beauty God is bringing to fruition in your life; learning to "be" instead of "do" is hard, but necessary to truly grasping His grace and love. :)
God bless you Kim,
Love, Hester ;)