Hope Repurposes a Life

It’s fun to find a discarded item and repurpose it. A piece of furniture from the neighborhood dumpster. A pot made from an old bowl. A scarf that morphs into a wall hanging.

My repurposing gifts stem from growing up on a farm and making do with whatever we had. DIY projects began on the family farm.

Need to make a straight row for the garden? Use sticks and baling twine. No need to buy something fancy from the gardening store.

Create a toy out of a piece of cardboard or leftover wood. Use Grandma’s old dresser and repaint it for whichever grandchild needs it next.

Our fashions consisted of hand-me-downs from dozens of cousins. The rule on the farm was: “If you don’t have what you need, make it with whatever materials you already have.”

Creativity thrived, but we did not think of our projects as art. More like survival. Repurposing became our way of life.

My repurposing projects have expanded well beyond furniture, wall hangings, or garden projects. I took the pieces of a former life and with God’s guidance, remade it into something new.

The ministry of counseling and coaching, helping people find a new direction in life, morphed into the ministry of words.

The solitude of sentences. Helping writers birth their words. Edits and publishing resources. Watching their books and mine expand on the dream shelf.

Any type of life transition becomes a repurposing project. How to stop being who we were to become the best “self” for a new season of life.

Henri Nouwen wrote, “The task is to persevere within the solitude.”

It is not a struggle to write, edit, and create in the quiet of my home. This is the creative side that has always existed—which God planned before the creation of the world.

It is just different. A new normal as I had to discover my function within a changing role.

When repurposing an object, we sit awhile and look at it from all angles. How can it be painted or redesigned? How can it be used most effectively?

Think Tom Hanks in Castaway as he sat on the beach staring at a piece of tin until he imagined it as a sail. His life-saving mode of escape.

To repurpose a life requires even more reflection. How can we use our gifts to bless others when the audience lives in cyberspace? Is this moment best used writing a blog post, editing a book, taking a creative walk, or reading a novel? All choices are important.

But which choice strengthens us for the new role? Allows us to end the day with a sense of purpose? Can we be content to just BE?

Learning to just BE has been hard for me—the natural doer, the planner, the initiator. But as I have learned the principle of quiet reflection, I now find a stronger creativity emerges. Unusual and unexpected projects completed. New ideas nurtured.

The beauty of a personal repurposing project is the assurance that God loves us no matter what we DO. He saved us to BE—to transition into different people.

Hope thrives when we can be our authentic selves. When we embrace life and move forward with joy. What if we find a new purpose and learn to be more authentic than ever before?

©2022 RJ Thesman – All Rights Reserved

Learning to BE is a day-by-day process. Check out some hope in Day by Day: Hope for Senior Wisdom.

3 thoughts on “Hope Repurposes a Life

  1. Hi Rebecca,

    Just wanted to say “hit” and that I believe our repurposing has begun. God has begun changing the tides in our life. . .but not exactly the way we planned.

    Believing insurance would gain us monetary gain to help us grow into retirement with more money and moving in 5 yrs. Instead, we’ve gone from moving in 5 yrs. To moving at end of this year or first of next.

    Instead of just us, we’re moving all of our adult children and each grandchild. It has been a journey requiring much consideration, planning, and goal-setting. . .on top of prayer, of course.

    We were unable to make a profit on our upside-down house where the shooting occurred. But, since the others pieces of property (rentals) were paid for, we were able to sell as a group and remove that debt.

    God has opened other doors and we’re working diligently at becoming debt-free. Simultaneously, we’ve been looking at acreage – some with houses and some raw land. Our oldest daughter and son-in-law are footing the bill or getting the load. Steve and I can use where we currently live (Bible warehouse) as the collateral for the down payment required.

    Well, we’re praying all goes as planned for our properties we’re selling and the closing for the 160 raw acres we found in OK should happen mid-Sept. So far, so good.

    Meanwhile, we’re picking up remodeling where we left off in our house when the shooting occurred and we couldn’t muster the strength, followed by the heat and no AC up there we wanted to use to save money.

    It took 7 places to look, but our family is working closer together than I’ve ever seen. All our beginning to dream and believe they will feel much safer when we move. Praying for healing for us all.

    We knew we’d be closing the church but kept praying for the right time. Made it 24 yrs. In July and announced Sun. we would be retiring Oct. 2nd. I feel relief now as I can share my plans with friends. Only my mom and 2 friends abroad and church sec. knew.

    God is continuing to open doors to prepare for this move.

    Since it is raw land and Steve will be the main builder and farmer, he is retiring early (Jan.) as far as going on S.S.

    The church is going to give us some money to live on the rest of this year and a % when it sells, but we’ve been coming up with all types of temporary living ideas until we have money to buy a mobile home or build something permanently. Got our spots already picked out. LOL.

    So now we’re juggling just as many things, but different things. Hallelujah.

    As far as writing goes, I’m keeping up with newsletters and blogs. Took a super great course for 5 wks. over the summer and am just trying to start implementing some of what I’ve learned now. I have to do some things to get more loyal subscribers before creating a course to sell and write more books. Don’t have money to pay for editing any books currently anyway so need to get some revenue coming in. We’ll see what God does with my writing and teaching. Trying to do video hasn’t worked out yet with my not knowing how to use same devices as others so will take more learning and research so isn’t priority.

    Just thought I’d drop a line to give you our positive update. It’s been a long time coming, but I am happy (and nervous).

    May God continue to use you mightily. You were a great help to get me to this part of my writing journey.

    Blessings,

    Jena Fellers

    Author, Inspirational Speaker, and co- Pastor

    Connect with me. . .

    http://www.changingfocus.life/ Blog

    https://m.facebook.com/jenafellersauthor/ Facebook

    https://Twitter.com/JenaRFellers Twitter

    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCZv3_RGwz941mmjebUlxc9w YouTube

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