There are many old houses in the area that I live in, and some date all the way back to 1900’s, when there were still dirt roads, Western Union telegraphs, and horse and buggies. The house across from me was built in 1924, and sometimes when I look over at it in the morning before work I cannot help but wonder about its history. Recently, this house was sold again, painted on the outside and restored on the inside.
My friend and I were talking the other day and this verse of scripture was really on my heart,
“ They will rebuild the ancient ruins, and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations.” (Isaiah 61:4)
“They will REBUILD the ancient ruins…”
A house possibly so old could very well have damage to the roof, or the siding, or the foundation itself could begin to crumble.
We all have places that have been damaged, and many of us could admit our foundations have had places of crumbling.
I remember a verse that God gave me in regards to healing one evening, and it was so profound to me because of how He revealed to me the process,
“ He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds.” (Psalm 147:3)
The Lord showed me that healing is a two step process.
1. He makes whatever we are dealing with bearable to continue on
2. He slowly starts to take care of the damaged parts of us.
“They will RESTORE the places long devastated…”
I watch the construction on the house for weeks, and each day I came home from work I would see something look back to what it may have back in the day.
Perhaps the stairs are being nailed back into their grooves, or perhaps there were windows that were broken or doors off hinges due to moisture. Slowly each week it was more restored.
We all have parts of us that need to be restored. We all have parts of us where maybe it was a relationship, an identity, or some sort of situation that once the healing began then slowly we saw evidence of it being restored.
“They will RENEW the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations…”
I came home the other day from work and the house across the street had a completely different paint. It honestly took some getting used to, because I was used to seeing this white and blue house that now had tan and dark brown colors.
The family that had moved there wanted a different color scheme, they wanted a porch built on the side of the house, and they wanted the plant hangers on the outside of the windows removed.
It looked like a completely different home. I knew from seeing it every day the changes that were made.
Just like that house, there were parts of you and I that have to heal, be restored, but also be renewed.
I can tell you that just like the new paint on that home across the street I did not really recognize myself in the mirror for awhile. The more I wondered if things would go back to what they, “were,” or what was, “ comfortable,” for me, the more they did not.
We cannot be the same people, doing things the same way, and expect a new result….it just cannot happen.
Our culture places such emphasis on getting back to the OLD you, but if we did that what stops us from falling into the same habits…we have to change…in every area that is unhealthy.
If I were the same person, my mind would still attack me so much so that I would literally concentrate on everyone around me and wonder what they thought of me….or I would think what they “would soon,” think of me.
If I were the same person, I would not believe God could make me truly free of what I had been through.
If I were the same person, I would spend every day convincing myself that I was not good enough to be used for God and comparing myself to others.
I do not have the same attitude or perspective in my life in many areas.
To be renewed means you trust that God knows better.
Trust Him when He tells you that there is something inside you that He needs to deal with… and you let Him….Trust Him with relationships. Trust Him with your workplace, with your family, and with your health.
To be renewed means to trust that the paint God will use will look better than it did before– The artist completes His work with certainty.
My Pastor said to me the other day, “ Your eyes look good,” and of course I did not pay attention and said, “ Oh thank you, but its just this new mascara I am using.”
And He shook his head, “ No that is not what I mean. The eyes are a window to the soul, and I can see your soul is doing well.” Sometimes we do not always recognize that God has changed us or, “renewed,” us, and sometimes He has to find ways to show us.
If we truly believe the Lord can heal us, and then believe He can restore us, and then believe He will renew us…we will have a completely different life then we have ever known…