Photo Credit: JD Mason.

Until recently I thought recycling was a relatively new, 20th century concept. Imagine my surprise when I discovered the first record of recycling was in Japan in 1031 when waste paper was reused. Of course the recycling process has gotten much more sophisticated since then. And many different types of materials are recycled; glass, plastic, aluminum, copper as well as paper. Once products arrive at a recycling center they are taken through a process during which they are either crushed, shredded or macerated and subjected to some type of heat.

If the process were to stop there, these products would be of no use and fit only for the trash heap. But that is only the beginning. The materials are then put back together, formed and fashioned and given new life, ready to be used in the manner the recycler intended. I got excited just reading about it. I’m sure most of us at some point have heard that slogan, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Well, nowhere is that more evident than in the Kingdom of God. Many of us at some point in our lives have felt like we were rejected and discarded by others and thrown on the trash heap. But God is in the recycling business!!!

And yes, we may have been emotionally crushed and shredded and macerated by betrayal or rejection or molestation or rape or domestic violence or any form of physical or emotional abuse. Sometimes the heat of our circumstances is turned up so high we are almost blinded by it. But, it’s all part of the process….. and it doesn’t end there. When we allow Him to, God puts us back together, He shapes us and molds us and fashions us in a way that only He can (Jeremiah 18:1-6 NLT). Only God can turn trash into treasure, pain into power, a hot mess into a holy miracle. You see, all of the pain and brokenness of our former selves is still in our newly created selves. NONE of what we have been through will be wasted.

Everything that the enemy tried to use to destroy us, to break us, to distract us, to detour our destiny; God will use (Genesis 50:20). And He will use it in ways that we can’t even imagine (Ephesians 3:20). So no matter whatever your back story is, take heart, hold on, don’t give up and don’t give in. I use to hear that many ministries are born in adversity. Now, I know from personal experience, that statement is very true. My own back story is one of molestation, rape and domestic abuse. I am well acquainted with the trash heap, sometimes I even put myself there with insecurities and feelings of inadequacy.

But thanks be to God for our Savior Jesus Christ who is willing to get down and dirty and sift through the trash heap to rescue and redeem us!!! (I Peter 1:18-19) So if you feel like you’re on the trash heap today cry out to God. The Bible says that when we cry out to Him, He hears AND He answers (Psalms 34:6, 17-18). We may have been rejected and discarded but we don’t have to stay there. Allow Jesus, the greatest recycler in the business, to mold you into a new and improved version of yourself.



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