My theme word for this year has been “restore”. We experienced a lot of brokenness the past few years, so I wanted this to be our restoration year.
What I didn’t realize was how much work restoration takes. I wanted things to be put back together and made whole again, but I didn’t know how much it would require of me.
When something is restored, there is a process it must go through in order to go from its current state to return to its original state. When you restore a piece of furniture, the first step is to strip off the old paint. It’s a messy process, but you can’t move ahead with the new until you remove the old.
The same is true when there is restoration in our lives. Old habits, relationships, and mindsets must be stripped away first before we can begin again with a fresh start. This refining process is tough, grueling work. Letting go of things that have been in your life for months, years or even decades is no small task. Yet, it is absolutely necessary.
While this year has been filled with things that have been stripped and removed from our lives, we have also seen the end result of restoration. The stripping away of relationships, financial security, earthly comforts and destructive environments has been hard. It has taken a toll on us mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually. However, those things that were once dust and ash have been restored into something far more beautiful.
Hosea 6:1-3 says…
“Come, let us return to the LORD.
He has torn us to pieces;
now he will heal us.
He has injured us;
now he will bandage our wounds.
In just a short time he will restore us,
so that we may live in his presence.
Oh, that we might know the LORD!
Let us press on to know him.
He will respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn
or the coming of rains in early spring.”
The Lord will respond; He will heal; He will bind up our wounds; He will restore, so we can live in the beauty of His presence.