Does anyone else love Chip and JoAnna Gaines? They are my renovation heroes. As a matter of fact, when we built our home a couple years ago, I went Magnolia Farmhouse with it. I love her taste in decor and her willingness to repurpose old things and make them beautiful. While Fixer Upper is definitely my favorite, I’m a big fan of any renovation show. I enjoy watching old things being made new.
Saul’s story of conversion to Paul is my favorite renovation story in scripture. Saul, before he was Paul, was running around persecuting and killing Christians. Acts 8:3 tells us Saul, however, was ravaging the church. He would enter house after house, dragging off men and women, and put them in prison. He was the worst kind of guy until one day on his way from Jerusalem to Damascus, he encountered a man named Jesus.
Acts 9: 3-8, As he traveled and was nearing Damascus, a light from heaven suddenly flashed around him. Falling to the ground, he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” “Who are you, Lord?” Saul said. “I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting,” he replied. “But get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.” The men who were traveling with him stood speechless, hearing the sound but seeing no one. Saul got up from the ground, and though his eyes were open, he could see nothing. So they took him by the hand and led him into Damascus.
In an instant, God took a murder, the worst of the worst and changed him from Saul, the old man, to Paul, a new man. Paul went on to turn thousands of hearts to the Christ he had persecuted for so long. God repurposed Paul, and He wants to repurpose you too. Yet, so often we get stuck thinking because of our past, we can never have a future. We believe the lie that after all we’ve done, God couldn’t possibly want us and he sure couldn’t, or wouldn’t use us. Well, I’m here to remind you that if He can take Saul, a murderer of God’s people, and turn him into the Apostle Paul, he can and will use you too!
I don’t know what kind of life you’re living or what kind of history you have, but God is in the business of renovation. He wants to take your pain and your past and turn them into purpose. He wants to make a masterpiece out of your mess, turn your trials into a testimony, and take your history and turn it into His-Story. He is the ultimate Fixer Upper, and He is waiting to make you new.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has passed away, and see, the new has come! 2 Corinthians 5:17