What happens when an appliance in your house breaks down? The heating filament in my oven toaster broke about a year ago. It would have been much more expensive to repair it than to buy a new one. So we threw the broken one away and bought another.
This seems to be a common practice in today’s consumer society. We await any legitimate occassion to buy the latest and the best. Therefore the old and broken get thrown away.
Sometimes we feel a bit guilty at the waste of throwing away something that can be repaired. So we put it away telling ourselves we will get round to repairing it when we have the time. But we never do. And the broken item collects dust and cobwebs in the dark.
Sometimes we treat people in the same way. In a fallen world people get broken for all sorts of reasons. Some broken people are discarded. De facto if not de jure. After all the church is for saints, not for sinners. More often than not broken people are put aside. Sidelined. We know we are supposed to be gracious to them. But often people are complicated. Their brokenness is messy. We are not sure what to do. So we put them aside till we are ready to help them. But life goes on. And people are left in the dark. Out of sight. Out of mind. For all intents and purposes they no longer exist. Thank God He is not like that.
This was my quiet time reading a few days ago:
“So I went down to the potter’s house; and there he was working at the wheel. But the vessel he was making came out wrong, as may happen with clay when a potter is at work. So he began again and shaped it into another vessel, as he thought fit.” Jeremiah 18: 3,4 NJB
Did your life come out right? Mine didn’t. I thank God that my God is in the restoration business. It’s just that sometimes I am not sure that His church is in the same business.