Beautiful Restoration

He restores every heart that is broken. Wow. What a deeply beautiful thought. I’ve never considered exactly what that might mean, being restored, until today as I was listening to the amazing worship song “Great Are You Lord” by One Sonic Day. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks. He restores.

I’ve always thought of restoration more along the lines of “rest” and feeling refreshed, but as I was standing in my kitchen doing dishes and worshipping, I saw this image in my mind of an empty, falling down, dilapidated house. No amount of rest is going to restore that structure. In fact, it’s going to continue to deteriorate and eventually disappear completely unless someone comes to restore it. 

All too often the world would look at this house and deem it not worth the effort, too far gone, worthless, unsalvageable. The worldly solution would be to bulldoze it down, haul off the trash, and start over.

Thankfully our precious God never looks at us in that way. He always sees the “bones” of our souls and goes, “There’s so much beauty and potential here. I want to restore this so desperately. I wonder if the owner will surrender ownership to me for the price I paid with my Son’s blood?”

It takes someone looking at that falling down place and seeing something worth rebuilding. Restoration takes work on the part of the restorer. Patient, persistent work and time.

Nobody can restore an old home in a day; depending on the damage, it can take months, even years. There are complications to deal with; old, rotten things to be taken out; new structures to be built in place of those that could no longer hold up the framework of the house; then finally someone has to move in and decorate and live in the new house so it can be maintained and continually updated and loved.

When we are talking about human beings it’s much the same. Once God extends to you the grace of restoration, and we accept that offer, we no longer own our broken down house. We surrender ownership to the Great Restorer.

Then the real work begins.

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He comes in and tears down the old, crumbling walls. He pulls out the rotten pieces. He gently cleans the parts that are still good and useable but have been hidden away, covered in a layer of dust and grime. Then he starts to rebuild. He doesn’t get rid of the original structure, He just finds a way to fortify it and make it better. He wipes away the sin that was deteriorating us from the inside out, then creates a new, awe inspiring house, and moves in!

He becomes the new homeowner, and he turns His house into a home by dwelling within it!!!

Then, once your foundation is firm and your structure is sound, and all the necessary repairs have been made, and you are fresh and new, he decorates. He paints a picture on the walls of your heart, a mural of who he wants you to become by prompting you to pursue certain passions that honor and glorify Him. He hangs a new light fixture in a dark corner of your mind or behavior that needs to be brought to light and changed.

He builds a new fence around your life, a hedge of protection to prevent others from invading or destroying His property. He plants a garden of abundant hope, love, and joy for you to eat from every day. He plumbs a well of living water so you will never thirst, and he installs multiple faucets from which you can draw: worship through song, reading His word, listening to those who teach His truth, spending time with Him one on one in quiet contemplation, meditation, and conversation. He doesn’t kick you out of the house. He desperately wants to dwell there WITH you.

He does this because he loves us so much that He literally breathed His own breath into our lungs so that we would have life. He always approaches in love. He never comes to destroy. If you are facing destruction in your life and feel like your soul is being bulldozed it’s the enemy, not the Lord.

I’m not saying that restoration never hurts. Most of those repairs are difficult and time consuming and require sacrifice and trust on our part. Some of the procedures feel deeply invasive. We don’t want to give up control to the contractor as we see things changing, even though we’ve surrendered the house to His plans and care.

We’ve never had anyone dig into the cracks in our character that need repaired. We’ve never had our mucky windows washed so the outside world could see in, and it can feel deeply uncomfortable, until we realize that now, instead of seeing our shame, they will be seeing the God of creation dwelling inside and the new splendor He brings into the house.

He creates us perfect, then we are born into an imperfect, sin-filled world. His greatest desire is to restore every part that is broken back to its original form.

Even as a long time Christ-follower I find myself in seasons of restoration. Things happen. Natural disasters of life strike. The death of a loved one, loss of a career, illness, or injury leave us feeling broken down and unsalvageable.

I’m so grateful for my Great Restorer, who steps in and patches the broken places.

In this moment I’m praying for you dear one, that you will know the touch and mercy of the one who desperately longs to restore your health, your finances, your hope, your love, your joy, your life, your security, and your soul. I pray you feel Him gently lifting away the old and replacing it with new. I pray you are able to visibly see and physically feel the changes He’s rendering in your life.

I encourage you tonight to invite Him to restore you, with a heart that knows His work isn’t always instant, but it’s always perfect. Then praise Him for making you whole again with the breath He’s given you. Find some time to drink deeply from the living water today, and taste and know that He is good!

Pray this verse over your life:

Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up. Psalm 71:20

Amen and amen.

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