American Restoration

“…you restored my life.”

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“I cried to you for help, O Lord my God, and you healed me; you kept me from the grave. I was on my way to the depths below,
but you restored my life.”  (Psalm 30:2-3)
I’m really relieved!  I drove by a local lawn and garden store today where Babe and Paul Bunyon make their home.  I was delighted to see that Babe had been restored to his rightful place after having been blown down a couple of terraces by one of the severe recent storms.

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For several days I drove by the store and saw poor Babe humbled, pathetically resting on his side with his stiff blue legs projecting weirdly into space.  It’s great to see the mighty Babe is back!

I’m a fan of a television show called, “American Restoration,” one of the History Channel’s offerings.  Folks bring items that are either already on the junk pile or one step removed from the heap to this fellow and his crew for restoration.  What they are able to accomplish in returning the items to pristine condition is nothing short of a miracle.  From junk heap to center-stage display — what a journey.

When something needs restored it usually means the item is almost unusable or unwanted in its present condition.  It’s been worn to a frazzle, left in the elements to deteriorate, or fallen from favor and cast aside to become the meal of moths and other scavengers.  I’m aware that there are people who might describe themselves in a similar fashion.  Worn out or worn down, neglected, abandoned, labeled as “no longer fit for service,” or even  rusted out from years of living an unhealthy, self-abuse lifestyle, they wait in need of restoration.

Restoration generally means that some outside assistance is required.  I didn’t see it happen, but I can almost guarantee that Babe was not restored to his place on the upper tier beside Paul Bunyon without the help of others (and possibly a small crane).  One of the key steps for all of us when we reach the point of needing restoration is the awareness that we cannot restore our own selves all by our selves.  We must embrace the reality that God created us to be in relationships for a reason.  We need each other.  (I also doubt that the folks who righted Babe condemned him for falling.  They just knew he needed restoration and pitched in to help.)

The Psalmist says, “I was on my way to the depths below, but you restored my life.”  We need the help of God and others to be restored.  There are others waiting for help to be restored.  Many of them will not show up on the doorstep of our places of worship.  We’ll have to go and find them, wherever they’ve been left to rust.  They’re in need of restoration.  God can restore.

I pray that God will help me seek those who are “left to rust,” and help them find the Divine love that can cleanse, heal, and restore.

Blessings and Peace,
Gary
Pastor, Cross Lanes United Methodist Church
Cross Lanes, West Virginia

Help save lives! For more information on my new book, “A Relentless Hope: Surviving the Storm of Teen Depression,” visit www.survivingteendepression.com.

Check out my new video, “Teens Surviving the Storm”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o1hSpxC_G24
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~ by revgenelson on July 18, 2012.

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