Restoring a Classic.

vette

I am not much of a car guy when it comes to mechanics but I do appreciate seeing a classic car restored to its original condition. I know a few guys who have poured countless hours into the restoration of a car. Often they will have a picture of the original car hanging nearby for inspiration as they painstakingly remove and repair the rust and dents of the “old beater”. Restoring a car is not for everyone, you must have a ton of patience, an eye for detail, and a passion for cars if you want the job done right. Each dent, scratch, and driven mile has a story to tell, a story that has a beginning from factory floor to its newly restored beauty.

From beginning to end, the world we live in has a rich history and makes for an incredible story. It tells a tale that has yet to be completed and according to scripture has a hope and promise of a beautiful restoration. The book of Revelation gives us a glimpse into what John calls a new heaven and a new earth, he describes the Holy City, the new Jerusalem coming down from heaven. Before the fall of man, prior to sin entering this world, God was pleased with his creation, it was “very good”. I don’t have to describe what has happened since that time, but if you haven’t noticed things are a far cry from very good anymore. This new heaven and earth is described like this: “There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain… It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal…The foundations of the city walls were decorated with every kind of precious stone… The great street of the city was of gold, as pure as transparent glass.” WOW, can you imagine it?

John continues to write about the beauty of this anticipated restoration for those who believe and live in obedience to God’s will. Until then, we are called to be good stewards and care takers of this earth. God’s charge to Adam in the beginning was to “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.” That charge follows through to us today; we have been given a great responsibility until the time comes when Jesus comes back to begin his great restoration project.

What is Good?

thumbsupThe aroma of fresh bread being baked in the oven, that is good. The first few sips of coffee that awaken your taste buds in the morning, that is good. Chocolate, no question, is good. Watching an early morning sunrise while fly-fishing on a river in the great outdoors, that is good. The comfort and warmth you feel when you stand with your back close to a fire on a cold winters day, that is good. Watching your child perform in their first play or concert, that is good. My mom’s homemade strawberry cream pie, well, that is very good.

Seven times in Genesis chapter 1 God calls his handiwork (creation) good (v.4,10,12,18,21,25,31). The word translated “good” here in chapter 1 is associated with other words like desirable, beautiful or right. This account of creation has a particular order and function that displays the sovereignty God has over all created things. Packed into 31 verses we read about the vast array of everything good before the fall of man. Not one created thing was without God’s touch of goodness, the sun and moon, stars, oceans and rivers, birds of the air, animals, mountains and valleys, and then at the climax of this great event, He created mankind in His own image.  An image that holds true, pure goodness.  In conclusion to His masterful plan “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good.”(Gen 1:31) Like an artist stepping back from the canvas, He was pleased with what He had created.

Everyday I am reminded of the good that was established through the creation in the very beginning. I have the privilege of living in a place where my morning commute can bring me to the foot of the mountain that towers over our city to the open road near the shores of the deep ocean waters. God continues to reveal his goodness through His creation, even in a world that has been marred by sin. We are His creation; we are called to reflect his goodness and love. When we put our hope and trust in God, we share in the confidence with other believers that His goodness will shine through in all our circumstances. “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28). This is good.