Restoration by Patty LaRoche

Patty LaRoche

When Dave and I were first married, I found a couple of end tables at a garage sale and brought them home to restore them, stopping first at a lumber yard where an elderly man helped me buy the correct supplies.  Dave was away on a baseball road trip, so it was the perfect time for me to set up shop in our one-car garage and turn ugly into beautiful.

It was a painstaking process, and to this day it has given me an appreciation for people like Jim Sackett who find it rewarding to refurbish furniture for a living.  After sanding, I applied the stain.  Two coats of polyurethane later (I had to protect my treasures), they turned into a masterpiece.  Today, I would call them ugly and take them to the dump, but not then.

The night Dave returned—and not anticipating anything to be in his path in our garage—he drove in and ran right over them.  I heard the noise and thought we were being ransacked which, actually, would have made more sense, but no!  Dave simply did not pay attention and reduced my tables to splinters.  His excuse didn’t fly (even though his car obviously did): “Why should I expect anything to be in the middle of the garage in the middle of the night?”                                “Well, lucky for me I wasn’t standing there to greet you.  Would you have just plowed over me too?”

I don’t remember Dave’s response, but I’m pretty sure it was NOT an apology.

Since then, only a few other times have I attempted to restore something.  This past week, I tried to restore the bottoms of my pots and pans. After soaking them in Google’s suggested homemade paste for several hours, not one stain came out. For some reason, what looks so simple…well, isn’t.

Of course, furniture is not the only thing needing restoration. Laptops, old photographs, leather boots, broken bones, friendships and marriages, to name a few, sometimes need repair.   Then, there are Christians.  Yes, Christians.  Even they occasionally need a little help, and lucky for us, God’s the best in the business at making the old look new.

The word “restore” appears 136 times throughout the books of the Bible. King David simplified things in Psalm 23:3: He (God) restores my soul.                                                           

Do you ever need your soul restored?  I sure do.  Like now.  A Christian couple is upset with me, and I fight the need to act ugly right back. I mean, where is their love, the one thing that’s supposed to set us apart from non-believers?  What about walking the talk?

So, I take it to God—albeit reluctantly—who reminds me that I need to ask those two questions of myself.  Where is my love?  Am I walking the talk?  If so, I would not be fighting the desire to tell this couple how they aren’t acting very Christ-like and demand an apology. Surely there’s a scripture entitling me to do so…somewhere.

But of course, there isn’t.  Instead, I find Romans 12:21: Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. In other words, I need to turn my ugly into beautiful. I need to allow God to restore what He knows needs a little help.


Lucky for me, no polyurethane required.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *