Weathered and Worn By Pastor Jeff In his autobiography, Sting (the lead singer…

Weathered and Worn

By Pastor Jeff

In his autobiography, Sting (the lead singer for the 70s and 80s rock band Police), tells about the purchase of his first guitar. In the local music store, he looked up and saw an old used Fender bass hanging on the wall amidst a bunch of shiny new guitars. Sting says:

“It [was] a careworn relic of the sixties, the paintwork ruined and the varnish flaked and piebald. Among all the shiny others on the wall there [was] something orphaned, something life-scarred about this instrument that appealed to me. I [had] absolutely no desire for a new bass. I wanted something with a history, where every scratch and dent in the varnish had a tale to tell. What were the dreams and aspirations of those who owned it? Why was it sold, and what were the circumstances? I am convinced that I can pick up the trail where it was left. I will dream up a new and glorious future that the past has only hinted at.”

So he bought it.

What Sting writes makes me think about how we see the people around us. Popular culture trains us to see superficially, measuring people by narrow, stereotyped standards of beauty. When we see a well-worn person, we don’t tend to see beauty.

But God sees differently. In God’s eyes, each life-scar, every scratch and dent, tells a story and adds to the complexity of the beauty that is each unique life. First Samuel 16:7 says, “The Lord does not see as mortals see. They look on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”

God meets us where we are, sees the beauty of our complex lives, picks up where the trail left off, draws on the wisdom implicit in our past experiences and failures, and dreams a new and glorious future for us that the past has only hinted at. “I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.” Jeremiah 29:11.

Next time you see a well-worn person, try to see them as God does. Whisper a prayer that God will bless them and let their beauty shine.

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