(I have recorded audio versions of this, and my other devotionals, in formats that both do, and do not have background music. They can be listened to at…SoundCloud.com/777arkV)
God created you. God fashioned you.
It is He who says – “Fear nothing.”
“I have redeemed you. I have personally called you by name.
You are mine.”
[God] restores my soul…
I had never been to a junk yard before. – Oh, sure, I’ve seen them in movies, cartoons and on TV, but, I had never actually been into one before.
My brother is a master self-taught mechanic, and, one day he needed to get a part for a project, and needed to go to a junk yard. He invited me to come along, to chit-chat while he rummaged around for parts. So I did.
We arrived, and, so, there they all were; hundreds of vehicles – row after row, isle after isle. As we walked through one section and the next, I suppose as demonstration to what type of fool man that I am… I began to feel sorry for them. The cars that is.
They were first off, broken. Windshields, bumpers, doors, hoods, tires… any part to a car that could be broken, could be found – broken. Secondly, I was struck by all the parasitic scavengers (sorry brother) plying their tools to dissect these forsaken vehicles, to get at the parts they wanted. Often, to get at the desired part, more of the car or truck was destroyed in the process; cut, hacked, snapped, twisted off and cast aside.
Finally my brother came to the make and model he was looking for, and, being busy with his head under the hood, talked less for a moment, and left me with nothing to do but wander around and look upon the forgotten objects around me. The ground was littered with car fragments, rusted parts, strewn wire, and naturally parts and pieces of parts I will never know the purpose of. Then truly, this is when I began to foolishly feel the most sorry for these inanimate objects, because I began to look inside them. Inside were old coffee cups, small toys, old CDs, even shoes, a shirt, or sunglasses or handbag.
All these cars had a story. They had people, and brought people to and from dinners, dates, school, funerals, doctors, family, friends, late night ice-cream, early morning coffee, day-care, matinée movies – and even nefarious stories, secret meetings, getaway car, contraband transporter…
…some of them I’m sure were even lived in for a time.
Then at last, actually very nearby where my brother was working, I stumbled upon the image that will forever be ingrained into my mind, that fully defined the feeling I was picking up on regarding junk yards.
“Total Loss” – That’s what that car was for sure. It even had a sticker slapped onto its face to make that clear, but, that is in most part the ruling that came down on all the vehicles in that junk yard. They were identified as a “Total Loss”, rejected, cast out… forgotten as if they were nothing ever in the first place.
Now, someone may want to point out, that all the people there to gather working parts demonstrated that these cars were not a “total” loss. They all clearly had some parts of value, but that only further bolsters my point. You see, the vehicle, the identity it held as a whole and complete thing, is what was declared a total loss. Its autonomous purpose as the car or truck that it was, was declared unsalvageable, un-repairable, un-restorable…a “Total Loss”.
– – –
Are you a total loss?
– – –
Is your marriage, your job, your family, your health, your dreams, your hopes, your life… your faith? – – – A total loss?
The answer – is “No”.
I do not need to run down the horrid list of things that lead people to believe either parts of, or all of their life is a total loss (frankly I don’t believe those kinds of trauma, loss and failures deserve any more attention than they already get), anyone that has experienced any of them already knows them and how they were brought to them more intimately than they wish. – Reminders are not necessary.
It also doesn’t matter…because the answer is still… “No.”
This is because first off we have all been redeemed by a currency of infinite value!
1 Peter 1:18-19 (condensed)
“You were not redeemed with anything that loses its value over time.
You were bought back by the perfect blood of Christ!”
Then, after being bought back, after being brought out of our own personal junk yard – God restores!
I will restore your health. Your wounds will be no more.
They who called Zion an unsought outcast…will see it happen.
We have been redeemed out of the curse of law, by Christ.
God, in His compassionate tender love and kindness, redeems!
In all their suffering, God suffered.
God saved them.
Compelled by His love and pity, He redeemed them.
He picked them up, and carried them, every day.
So keep hope!
Run to the castle, you prisoners of hope.
Today, by My command, I will restore double to you.
All that is old and broken is destined to be restored! Made complete in whole! Made new!
He, sitting on His throne said,
“I am making all things new!”
“Write that down! Because these words are a true and absolute certainty!
Understand this now! With God?
Nothing – is a “Total Loss”.
Mark Vincent Vicari †
Please note – If Bible verses are not specifically noted as being taken directly from the King James Version, I paraphrase all Bible verses that I use. The primary reason for this is in putting a verse into my own words I clearly expose how I read and understood the verse myself. Please always take the time to compare my understanding of a verse with the verse itself from your preferred translation of the Bible.
© 2016 Mark Vicari – All Rights Reserved