When I was a kid I used to listen to records… actual records. You know, big black discs with grooves in them. My parents had a ton and I listened to them all. My dad had Beatles’ records, my mom had the Lettermen, Simon and Garfunkel, and Motown, my older sister had Michael Jackson… Rachael and I had Disney records featuring a very young Molly Ringwald singing “This is My Country”, I kid you not. Anyway, I remember listening to those records and just being mesmerized by the bigness of the sound and the art work on the covers and the smell of the vinyl.
Of course, you know the story: records gave way briefly to 8-tracks but ultimately to cassettes, and then to CDs, and now to digital music. Now, let’s be honest I love digital music… the ease of it, the compact size and portability, but records still hold a place in my heart. I’m one of those kind of guys who likely has two iPods and two record players just in case… Recently, I have gotten back into vinyl (for the second time) and all those early memories of my parents’ and sisters’ vinyl came rushing back, and even the nostalgia of my very own Fisher Price record player sits with me as I listen to new and old music on LPs. Personally, I think a resurgence in the actual production and distribution of vinyl could really boost the sagging music industry, but that’s not my point… My point here is that what was old can be made new again.
God’s mission throughout history has been to restore, to redeem, to make new… Genesis 3 – Man and woman mess up, and God has the right to destroy them right there, but instead while he punishes them he still shows them grace, he clothes them, and then promises a Redeemer in Genesis 3:15 who would “crush the head” of the serpent. And in Revelation 21 we see all this come to fruition…
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
5 And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Revelation 21:1-5a
There are a lot times when I feel too broken to do any good. Too obsolete to matter. I feel that my past, or even my present aren’t good enough to be of any use to God, or his people, but then I remember that God is in the business of redeeming lost things. He is in the business of taking weak and ugly things and making them beautiful and strong – so that they may shine in the light of his glory.
I know some of you out there feel too messed up to matter, but thankfully for all of us God does not see us that way. Through Jesus Christ, the Great Redeemer, our past does not have to decide our future and our worth does not have to be measured by the sum of our actions. Let God bring you back to life and fully rely on Him.
Oh btw, if you are interested in getting vinyl locally check out these shops (if you have other suggestions, put it in the comments)… Park Ave CDs (Winter Park, FL) and Rock n’ Roll Heaven (Orlando, FL)