Restored

In about an hour I am leaving town to attend a wedding rehearsal. It is with great honor that I have been asked to take part in the wedding of my best friend. The honor and joy I feel for him comes from watching a new chapter be written on what has been a tough journey for him. I remember a time when all we saw in front of him were dark clouds and storms. Tomorrow night, his wedding will mark the start of a new journey and the completion of the promise of restoration. Below is a post I wrote a long time ago, but I thought it was worth a re-post. Thank you Lord for restoring what was once broken.

fc2b81f9-d8f0-4a57-a1c6-1943e5b50687.jpgA couple of months ago a strong wind came by and pretty well ripped the storm door on the front of our house right out of the door closers. Being the handy man that I am, I just took the screws out of the hinges, removed the door and put it in the garage! We still had the front door right? The house was still secure and functional, but clearly something wasn’t right. I am man enough to admit that the best tool I own is the phone book (to call someone that knows what they are doing) to fix these types of problems.

Over the weekend, the door was repaired and the front of our home has finally been restored. Not only that, but reinforcements are put in place so that it won’t happen again. I understand what David meant when he said -

“Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit to sustain me.” – Psalm 51:12

I think of the mess that King David had made. He fell far from the little guy in the field with 5 smooth stones. He was worn out emotionally, physically, mentally and was desperate to be restored. Ever been there?

Have you ever restored something? I can remember when I was in High School, it was a really big deal to find an old car and restore it. I wouldn’t even know where to start, but I would know this…

Restoring something takes time

Restoring something takes patience

Restoring something removes the imperfections

Restoring something makes it new again

Restoring something, sometimes, makes it stronger than before

Now take those things we know about restoring something and place them over the hurts of ours and others. I think of friends that are going through struggles that we can never fully understand. I want so badly to just fix it. I want for nothing more than the TV version where they flip a house into a mansion in an hour (including commercials). I want to rejoice with them over the good news.  I want nothing more than for God to restore as only He can.

After a lengthy battle with the unimaginable, God restored to Job “twice as much as he lost” (Job 42:10).¬†God is in the restoration business. While his version is not “made for TV”, it is certainly¬†reality. It takes time. It takes patience. It removes the imperfections. It makes all things new and in many cases, stronger than before.

That’s what I’m praying for….

Restore To Me” by Mac Powell


Something Even BIGGER

Well friends, we’re back from a whirlwind 72 hour tour of Charlotte, North Carolina. Some of you may be looking at that picture and saying…”that looks like Columbus, Ohio”. If you did, you’re right. It is. On the heels of the big announcement from Friday, I have an even more wild and crazy one.

The Conrad Family is STAYING in Columbus, Ohio!

The details will be coming in future posts, but to give you an idea of what the next week to two weeks holds. I’m off to Denver Colorado on Tuesday and Wednesday. I’m in Indianapolis on Thursday. We’re still scheduled to close on our house on the 19th. You read that correctly. As of the writing of this post, we are bound by our contract and due to sell our existing home. We could use a miracle on that minor detail.

If no miracles happen, we’re combing Hilliard for available homes which we can relocate to. Again, the details are crazy right now, but this is our “home” and we believe God wants us here. Even after the sale of our home and the prospect of being “homeless” in 2 short weeks.

I told you to buckle up. Much, much, much more to come!

“Crazy” by MercyMe

Something Big

 

In March of this year, we began a journey that took a BIG turn yesterday. Huge. In reviewing that post tonight. I recalled quoting the lyrics of John Waller when he sang:

“Something so big, it’s destined to fail without you Lord”

Friends, readers and those that may be visiting for the first time, I have an announcement to make….

In a little over two weeks, the Conrad family will become official residence of Charlotte, North Carolina.

Yes, you read that correctly. TWO WEEKS! I told you it was big. As late as Tuesday evening, I was just telling Heather that “if God wants us in Charlotte, He is going to make it pretty obvious”. In the category of “Be careful what you wish for” I got a call from our Realtor and friend Steve this morning to inform me that there was an offer on the table. Never expected that. While the offer was less than we were asking (common practice), it was in no way insulting and certainly within bargaining room. It also had a qualifier. Our potential buyer wanted to close by September 19th. They also wanted an answer by 8pm today.

We met at 6pm and prepared our counter offer knowing we might only get one shot at it. Knowing we might need to be house shopping in Charlotte this weekend, we requested their response by 10am. 30 minutes after leaving our home, our Realtor called and said:

“I’ve got good news and bad news. The bad news is Missy and I are going to really miss you guys. The good news is that you just sold your home.”

Just like that, in the matter of 8 hours the kite has officially been launched in the hurricane (Hannah to be exact). We’re headed to Charlotte tomorrow afternoon and will be barnstorm house shopping on Saturday and Church visiting on Sunday. There is much more to come on this story, but if I could ask your prayers for direction, discernment and wisdom this weekend they would sure be appreciated. We’re excited about chasing daylight while placing our trust in much greater hands.

I’m sure I’ll post some updates to Twitter and Facebook throughout the weekend. Thank you all for your prayers and sharing the journey so far. Buckle up friends…it’s going to be a wild ride!

“Something Big” by John Waller

Wide Open Spaces

529429219_bdfb0af58a.jpg10 years ago, Heather and I packed up a moving truck and left our hometown of Cleveland for Columbus. At the time a song by the Dixie Chicks had lyrics which said “She needed wide open spaces. Room to make a big mistake“. At the time of our “big move” (funny now) I remember wondering if we were doing the same thing. You see the decision came from Heather and I. We didn’t feel called to it. We just decided to move. God was at work, more despite our efforts and not because of them. I don’t know that we ever even prayed about it.

Fast forward 10 years and oh how the times have changed. Never more in our marriage have we talked, thought, prayed, discerned, sought Godly advice and prayed some more. This much I know for sure…we are at peace. We are at peace because we are following what we believe God has called us to. We have a peace because we are not forcing the issue. This time around, we are leaving a wide open space, but it is there for God to be God. Like riding the bike, He initiated, we responded knowing He will initiate again.

For the first night in a couple of weeks, I will go to bed with a complete peace. No matter what happens the next 2 weeks, the next month, the next year I am at peace with the course we have set. I don’t know what the journey to get there will look like, but that is not the point. The point is allowing room for God to be God and as my friend and mentor Denny said, “being available and obedient”.

Even in wide open spaces.

The Space In Between Us” by Building 429

He's Not Here!

“You Reign” by MercyMe

worship__.jpg

4But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. 5As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

6“Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. 7But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’ “

Mark 16:4-7