I recently downloaded TikTok, I know, I know, but hear me out. This post is not about TikTok though I may write one eventually…I’m still learning and figuring it out. BUT, I created a TikTok account and I have been making some pretty cool process videos, letting others in behind the scenes, and showing them how already special, purposed treasures can be given an entirely new purpose becoming that much more sacred.
The first video I made that received any amount of “substantial” views, I showed the process of turning a zippo lighter into a leather cuff. Now this lighter wasn’t just an ordinary lighter. It was one of only three that a sweet woman had that belonged to her late father. In fact, it was the ONLY thing she had left that belonged to him. She’d kept them safe for a while, but they were just sitting in a drawer. Not enjoyed and not used for any purpose. They were no longer being used as lighters.
So, she reached out to me for help. She asked if there was any way I could use one of the lighters to make something for her to actually wear and enjoy on a daily basis. She knew there was a possibility it could be given a new purpose. Although the lighters hadn’t been used in years, they were still valued, loved, and special.
My husband and I were up to the task (this was going to take some fancy metal tools) and we got to work. I took small video clips of the whole process because it was just way too cool not to share and I wanted to have some of the steps documented. Well, not only did repurposing the lighter work, it turned out to be one of the most beautiful cuffs I’ve ever made. I looked at the finished bracelet and thought “Thank you, God!” How amazing that we were able to create something so beautiful for her to enjoy.
A couple weeks later I took those mini video clips and I created the video in TikTok and uploaded it. The caption read “Not just her dad’s old lighter, but memory jewelry instead”. Well, it started to gain some traction, and then more traction, and now it has currently been viewed over 180,000 times.
But with views comes comments.
The first comment was sweet and encouraging, but the remaining twenty or so comments went a little like this “Why didn’t you just refill it?”, “I would prefer it stay a lighter.”, “Why are you doing that to this treasure?”, “It still works, but let’s destroy it.”, “What a disgrace that was a perfectly beautiful zippo”.
Right? It’s hard to read those comments when you know what a gift it is to the woman who gets to wear it.
I am sure there are MULTIPLE lessons in this story, but I was thinking about all those comments as it relates to God repurposing us and what it may look like to those who are watching you be transformed.
They might not like it.
Allowing God to shape you and move in your life, changes you. You are a new creation in Christ. The old is gone, the new has come. Praise God that He loves us so much that He must transform our lives! While we’re letting God shape us, others may feel left behind, or they may not like the “new” you. They’d prefer you stay a lighter with a predictable purpose or even left in a forgotten drawer, hidden, and useless.
They might not understand it.
Maybe you’re putting in more time with Jesus, like going to church, or joining a bible study, or maybe you’re seeking Godly counsel and therapy to work through something difficult. It may be hard for people to understand when you “worked just fine” before.
They might not support it.
There may be people in your life that are very attached to the “old” you. The you that made sense to them before transformation began. To them, there’s comfort in knowing that you are safe with the old purpose. You’re not confusing to others when you look, act, think the same as before. You are also not in any danger, or possible pain when left as the lighter in the drawer.
But, we can see the beauty in both.
We can see the beauty in the original piece. How it was used lovingly by the man who treasured it. We can see his daughter clinging to it as one of the only things she has of his belongings, and we can appreciate its new life as a memory piece – something for her to look at daily to remind her of her father and how she loves him. Her new creation will be a conversation piece and when she’s asked where she got the unique bracelet she can share it’s transformation story. She can share where it started and how it came to be sitting on her wrist today. She will unveil more of her beauty as she is filled with joy each time she glances at the new daily reminder of her father. It will be a part of her story.
And so it is with you.
You can appreciate and love the beauty in your life before and after God’s repurposing. You can appreciate where you started and boast gladly in your heavenly Father and what He has done in your life to get you to where you are today. Sister, being repurposed can be challenging for those watching – shoot! It’s challenging enough to walk through the repurposing – but don’t let that keep you from His work, which He has already planned for you . This is what it means to “Count it all joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds” (James 1.2 NIV). Count it joy now, find it now because there will be transformations for our entire lives on this side of heaven. I promise your Father treasures you through the whole process and he does not want you hiding to trapped in a drawer. He wants you out, basking in his love, and to “have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10 NIV)