Trash to Treasure

January 24, 2011 by  
Filed under Daily Devotions, Family

By Hally Franz –

Garbage collectors need a holiday. Administrative assistants, nurses and teachers have special days. Early-rising men and women who take away the ridiculous amount of waste we Americans make should be celebrated as well. This recognition would be especially nice in January after what must be one of the worst week’s of the trash man’s year, the week after Christmas.

My husband and I have survived the early childhood years; our children are now at tween and teenage stages. One difference in these development stages is the size and price of Christmas gifts. Young children equal large packages without much cost, while older ones get smaller boxes that require more money. Play sets and building blocks take up lots of space and come with layers of packaging. How many Christmas mornings have found you filling black bags with mangled bubble wrap, cardboard and plastic, wrapping paper and bows?

I know moms who are willing to let big boxes remain around for weeks, so their kids can have some old-fashioned fun, but I have to admit, I experience anxiety when the clutter and debris begin closing in on me. I’ll sacrifice my children’s creative opportunities if my sanity is at stake.

My son has frequently retrieved discarded items from our trash for some project he has in mind. He gets big ideas about what can be done with a rusted bird bath or old deep sink. I indulge these endeavors as long as he keeps them in his space and in an orderly fashion. Ivan is the one that started us on the path of recycling several months ago.

There’s a favorite school field trip destination in our area that’s called “Leftovers.” It’s dedicated to making art from all sorts of trash, and what they do with old, seemingly useless stuff is truly amazing. What can be better than inspiring creativity (while eliminating mess), and being environmentally conscious at the same time?

I’m rarely able to see potential in dented and damaged objects, bent and tangled cardboard. I am eager to get rid of anything not obviously worthy in function or aesthetics. Thankfully, God doesn’t look at people in the same way I look at things. He sees value in us all, even when we appear worn and weary, haggard and helpless. He recycles daily as He did in the Bible, making heroes of everyday people, heaven-bound treasures from human trash.

PRAYER: Almighty God, He who has endowed each of us with heavenly gifts and talents, help us to discover the overlooked potential in ourselves and others, so that we may more fully serve You.

“Then Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem: And here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that call on thy name. But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel” (Acts 9:13-15 KJV).

Today’s devotion is by Hally Franz. Hally is a former teacher and high school guidance counselor, turned homemaker. She enjoys volunteering at her childrens’ school, teaching Bible classes at her church, leading projects in 4-H, writing, reading, scrapbooking, and rousing (though, sometimes, not pretty) Zumba classes.

About Hally Franz

Hally Franz writes about her observations on family and faith, parenting and people. She is a former high school guidance counselor, turned stay-at-home mom. Hally and husband Tim will celebrate twenty years of marriage this year, and have two teens. She is a 4-H leader and band mom, serves as her church secretary and as a Bible class teacher. Hally enjoys traveling with her family and participating in monthly book club meetings with her pals.


3 Responses to “Trash to Treasure”
  1. Carin LeRoy says:

    Thank goodness God loves us all – whatever state we’re in!

  2. Hally Franz says:

    Absolutely! I often need that grace. Thanks, Carin!

  3. Ellen Richards says:

    How true! If we could learn to look at each other the way God views each of us, can you imagine how much love there would be in our world?

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