Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Clunker - Black

The old car that once was your sleek and polished-till-gleaming, and babied pride and joy, is now a rust bucket. It gets sent to a wrecker’s yard, where some salvageable components are removed for spare parts, and what’s left comes under ‘The Great Crusher’. From thence it joins a bunch of other hapless vehicles that have already shared that fate, to be carted off together to a steel plant, where they go through a blast furnace.

The hull of your old car may come out as part of a great ingot of steel, having the girth of a large fallen maple. That ingot might go through another furnace, then be rolled under enormous pressure, and made into a huge roll of sheet steel, or be cast in a mould, or forged or stamped into any of various forms under many tons of pressure. The items coming out of that process may later go through various treatments to cut, grind, fashion, and temper them ... and so on.

What will your old pride and joy become? A few lengths of metal pipe? Concrete reinforcement bars? Or, thousands of key rings? Maybe a gazillion nuts and bolts to help hold other cars together. Will it become a railing on a cruise ship, or perhaps a huge anchor or chain? Maybe a gun in the hands of a hunter, or soldier; or in the hands of a criminal – God forbid!
Ah, but perhaps your car will rest in the gentle hands of dozens of skilled surgeons and nurses around the world, as scalpels and hypodermic needles, saving lives.
What that car was is not quite what it was becoming, and what it was becoming was not clear until it was complete, and finally revealed. By that time, no one involved in the process knew what it had been before, neither did they care.

But our Heavenly Father cares about what you and I are becoming, and will continue to work His grace in us as we entrust ourselves to Him.

Reflection Scriptures
Rom. 8:28-29 (NIV) 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. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.
1 John 3:1-2 (NIV) How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.
Rev. 21:4b-5a (NIV) There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!"
I wrote the original version of the above illustrative scenario some time ago, and revised it recently as an illustration for a homily. May you find some inspiration for your life.
Peter A. Black is a soon-to-be-retired pastor living in Southwestern Ontario, and a freelance writer.
He is the author of "Parables from the Pond" (Word Alive Press).
His current project is ghost writing an historical biography.


Dolores Ayoyye said...

Dear Peter,
Bright and early,I was up to read your post as I knew it was scheduled. I checked yesterday to see who was next. As usual I was pleased by your well thought out words.

To be children of God, never ceases to amaze me. How great is that? :)

Peter Black said...

Thanks Dolores.
You wrote: To be children of God, never ceases to amaze me. How great is that? :)
Well, I like that. You squeezed a joyful chuckle, as I immediately thought of 1 John 3:1 - "How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!" (NIV).
For sure, how great is that?

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