In 2012 I attended the Passion Conference in Atlanta, GA while involved in the college ministry at my church. This event had great speakers like Louie Giglio and Francis Chan. Worship was led by Chris Tomlin, Matt Redman, Kristian Stanfill, David Crowder, and even Hillsong. The conference was held at the Georgia Dome and there were over 40,000 people present. It was epic.
During the conference, I asked God to “give me a word”, hoping that I would have some revelation. Instead He gave me a seed. That day I was handed a black and white sticker with the word “restore”. I didn’t think much of it at the time, in fact I was kind of disappointed, but I put it on my journal, knowing that God may use it.
You need to know, I’m a words person. I’ve had a dictionary app on my phone since it became an option. If you need a synonym, let me know, because I would love to find you one.
Little did I know that The Lord and that word would inspire me and eventually this blog idea. I love word studies, where you take words… and study them. Classic. And let me tell you something about words. Some of them have prefixes, which have their own little meanings. “Anti-” meaning “against”, “Fore-” meaning “before”, “Non-” meaning “not”, “Sub-” meaning “under”. I think you get the point. Well, “re-” means “again”, hence words like redo, renew, refine, and restore. Boom. Lauren has just fallen in love with the word “restore”. It captures the purpose of Christ. To ultimately restore our relationship with the Father… a second chance.
Over the next few months, God began to reveal Himself to me through specific words. These words seemed to jump of the page of my Bible or journal with such deep meaning and weight. Each word captured a small part of the Kingdom and the Gospel in it’s own little way. I also began to notice a pattern with these words: They all started with “r” or “re-“. The theme became something my heart took note of, and I began making a list of these “r” words. (footnote: I’m also a habitual list maker. It’s a problem).
It didn’t take long for me to recognize the prefix “re-“, which when placed in front of a word generally means “again” or “redone”.
Imagine an old, rusty, beat up pick up truck abandoned in a salvage yard. It’s dead, no longer functioning as it was created to, it cannot fix itself, and there is no hope for it. The only way for it to return (ha, re-)… return to its prime, is for someone who knows everything about it to come and do some serious work. Someone who knows it’s very in’s and out’s, is willing to do the hard work that is required, visualizes what it was originally created to be, and has a passion to bring it back to life. Jesus, you may now enter the scene. This is us. This is the redemption story of human nature. The Bible says we were dead in our transgressions sins. When someone is dead, can they bring themselves back to life, or are they helpless? Spoiler alert: They cannot bring themselves back from the dead, unless they are Jesus.
Jesus came to to rescue us, to give us a chance to be redeemed, to restore us, and restore our relationship with the Father. His perfect sacrifice and conquering of death provides our second chance, our chance to re-do what was undone with the fall of mankind.
The seed given to me that day was meant to grow and turn into something much more. One word study at a time, I pray that God’s heart and the Kingdom would be revealed to every reader.