Restored and Refreshed


The Mrs. and I recently watched one of our favorite home shows where they took a small house located on a giant lot and restored it into something beautiful.  The highlight of the home wasn’t only the renovation, but the fact that there was a private pond (small lake really) in their backyard where they could step outside and enjoy the relaxing view.

When they began, the home had every issue one could imagine; everything from termite damage, foundation issues, water damage, rodent infestations, outdated electrical, rotten plumbing, and every floor had to be replaced.  By the time they finished the work, it was almost completely new.  Having only paid fifteen thousand dollars for the home and land, the owner then spent another fifty thousand into renovating it (all she could afford).  With the pond in the back combined with what the show did for her, it is now probably worth more than double what she put into it. 

In many ways, that old rundown house reminds me of life.  So many times, life tears at us and breaks us down.  The infestation of greed, anger, and bitterness eat into us all the way down to our core.  Over time, the enemy comes to steal from us, poor decisions cause the loss of structure, and fear wreaks havoc with our security until, one day, we’re only a shell of what we were.

It’s at that point, if we only ask, that the Great Carpenter comes in and brings new life to our weather worn hearts. He kicks out the enemy, reinforces our inner foundation with joy and peace, heals the wounds that brought brokenness, and refreshes us with a new coat of Spiritual paint. 

When He’s done, we’ll look better than we ever did before; inside and out.  The wounded, broken home of our heart will be completely restored, and He’ll put His peace where chaos once was.  When we open the door to our heart, we’ll look out and see the fresh, clear water of His Spirit.  All that was meant to destroy us will now be gone leaving only a beautiful work completed by His very hands…

Love always

Up in Flames


I sometimes think about driving home one day and finding out that our home had burned down.  All our life’s savings, memories, clothes, and furniture had gone up in flames.  It’s not a pleasant thought that’s for sure.   But, it’s one that many men may have as they comb through their minds trying to think of all the possible ways a fire could start in their home.  Even after all of the forethought and taking care, nature may still win out.

Several years ago, some friends of ours had a bolt of lightning hit their home and send electricity through the house shorting out all the wall units and starting a fire.  The fire quickly took hold.  They were fortunate enough to get of the burning house, along with their pet dog, only to watch their life’s work go up in flames.  Because the fire department arrived quickly, they were at least able to preserve the structure of their home, but the water and smoke still had done tremendous damage.  Since then, they have rebuilt their home into something even better than it was before.  The journey has been a long one and the cost has been very high.  Not everyone can say the same, however.  Many will lose their home and not have anything left but ashes and smoke.

Sometimes, relationships can end a lot like those homes burned down by ‘natural’ disasters.  We may be in what we think is a solid relationship only to see it go up in flames from an unexpected random event that brings destruction when we least expect it.  We may not lose the entire relationship, but what’s left, we may not feel is worth saving.

On the other hand, we may have very little left when a relationship falls apart but with hard work, lots of effort, sacrifice, and persistence, over time we may be able to rebuild it into something even better than it was before.  It may look the same on the outside to those who didn’t know what we had to do to repair it, but inside, we will know.

I know I’m speaking in what some may consider hyperbole, but the truth is that every relationship will come under fire.  That fire may wreak havoc on us.  It may even seem like there’s no way to repair it and that it’s better to just walk away.  Yet, with enough love, care, and time, nearly any broken relationship can be rebuilt.  

Tonight, I’m praying for one specific relationship in my own life that had burned up in flames long ago by a random flaming arrow that was shot into my life.  What’s left is but a shell of what it could have been.  I’m still holding out for it to be rebuilt into something better than ever.  I have the vision and desire for it to be rebuilt.  I also know that, with God’s help, it can be done.  It won’t be easy and there will be lots of painful moments in the process, but in the end, it will be worth it.

If you’re facing the loss of a relationship that went up in flames, be encouraged.  What seems to be lost can be rebuilt.  You may not even want it to be rebuilt, but over time as wounds heal and forgiveness is granted, you may find that openness to try again.  This time, it could work out into something even better than it was before.  With God’s help, all things are possible…

Love always