On a recent mission trip that I attended, I was throwing old shingles into a dumpster. When we began our work, the dumpster was completely empty. But, after we had been at work on the home for a few days, I noticed that the dumpster was getting full.
We had to tear off all of the old shingles before we could put on new ones and they had to go into the dumpster. After we removed the old shingles, we found quite a few boards that had rotted due to weather exposure. They had to be removed and put in the dumpster as well.
If we would have put new shingles over rotten wood. The wood would have continued to rot. Those old, rotten boards would not have been able to support the weight of the new shingles and they certainly would not have held up over time.
No, the bad had to be stripped away entirely before we could build something new and lasting.
That dumpster was ugly as was all of its contents, but it was completely necessary for transformation. Its symbolism spoke to me so loudly that I had to snap a picture.
Don’t we go through a similar process when we allow Jesus to work on our hearts?
We often carry around ugly and rotten things underneath our shingled exterior. Sometimes, like that roof, no one can even see them or knows that they are there, but us.
But, like a good roofer, Jesus knows, and He comes along and chips away at that exterior, exposing the bad underneath. Everyone’s bad looks different. It may be anger, hurt, shame, pride, anxiety, resentment or anything that separates us from the love of Christ.
After He exposes it, He cuts it out and throws it in the dumpster, replacing it with faith, hope, forgiveness, and love and then He shingles over all of that with grace.
But, we have to be willing to allow Him not only to expose the bad stuff, but to remove it and throw it away. That dumpster can get pretty full and ugly, but we have to allow it to fill up so that it can be hauled away for good.
Jesus calls us to live an abundant life with Him and to be transformed into something new. In order to do that, we have to be able to worship Him with our whole hearts. We can’t do that if we are carrying around rotten parts that need to be let go.
A half-full dumpster reminded me. Perhaps you needed reminding too.
Have an awesome day!