Our Adirondack chairs were in terrible need of refinishing last summer but I put it off. Having done similar work on my deck a number of times, I knew first hand the amount of work involved. So far this summer was proving to be no different. Yet, I would harbor no guilt until probably mid-January when the snow began piling up on their oversized arms.

More than a decade of exposure to the elements left the screws rusted and many nails loosened. The wood itself was cracked in some places and heavily grooved throughout where the softer portions were more easily worn away. There was a certain charm to the chairs’ rugged, aged appearance. I could see them being used as subjects in a painting or housed in a museum. But, since we planned to keep using them something had to be done.

Last week my wife plunged into the restoration project. I joined her in time to apply the finish and sealer. While we were working together, a song came on the radio, Flawless, by Mercy Me. Have you heard it?  It has one of those choruses that stay in your head…

IMG_0349No matter the bumps
No matter the bruises
No matter the scars
Still the truth is
The cross has made
The cross has made you flawless

No matter the hurt
Or how deep the wound is
No matter the pain
Still the truth is
The cross has made                    
The cross has made you flawless

Restoring the chairs to their intended purpose while listening to inspirational lyrics made it hard not to do a little personal reflection. I was reminded that when God makes us right with him, he is in effect restoring us to our intended purpose. In my mind that purpose includes loving God with all that is in us, and loving our neighbors as we already love ourselves. (Matthew 22:40)

Later, I found another couple more verses…

This includes you who were once far away from God. You were his enemies, separated from him by your evil thoughts and actions. Yet now he has reconciled you to himself through the death of Christ in his physical body. As a result, he has brought you into his own presence, and you are holy and blameless as you stand before him without a single fault. Colossians 1:21-22 NLT

I guess I need stop and ask myself once in a while, am I letting the storms I encounter in my life fashion me into a charming, but unusable museum piece or am I letting God work in my life restoring me to the purpose for which I was made?

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