A quick text to my brother to let him know that hey, I'm at your work and I continued walking to the back of the building. A few drains later, a look at range hoods, and there we stood staring up at crated cabinets. I oohed and aahed and calculated. The numbers raced through my brain and various possible combinations sprang to mind. Too orange, too curvy, I crossed certain styles off my list while holding onto the one style that looked like it would complement my kitchen.
After hauling them off the shelf I only almost ran into two inanimate objects before my brother relieved me of my steering responsibilities and dragged the flatbed to the front of the store. We paid and walked out of Lowe's and y'all I couldn't stop smiling. Over cupboards.
Once upon a time I lived in a fab little house. It was a fixer-upper and I had every intention of repainting the cabinets. In my fervor to repaint them we had removed all of the cupboards and to put it simply, two years later I still didn't have cupboard doors back on them. I didn't really mind the door-less cabinets, but they were definitely something that I wanted to fix when I got the chance. My chance never came. I left that house and started a new life--one fraught with more uncertainty and responsibility than I could have ever imagined, but every step of the way He never left my side.
My best friend is redoing her kitchen. It's fabulous is all the ways a huge farm kitchen should be and as she rearranged the contents of her cabinets I said a little jokingly, "I'm envious of all the space!" Nonchalantly she mentioned a blank wall in my kitchen that would house cabinets very nicely. I agreed and went about my business not dwelling on the cupboards. A few days later she offered for her husband and kids to come install the cupboards as long as it was before spring hit because, well, they're farmers and spring is busy. I still didn't take her seriously, but there I stood a day or two after that in an aisle at Lowe's picking out seventy two inches of redemption.
The last two and a half years have been rough. The last year has been brutal. A year ago I was in the middle of some of the darkest days of my life through which I was led by grasping at His hem and taking Him at His word that He still loved me and that He had already redeemed me...even in this I was always already and forever His. These cabinets, these wooden vessels, they are just things. They won't go with me to heaven. They aren't even anything special in and of themselves, but what they symbolize...I said that they will be the cabinets I take off the wall and haul with me when I move because they are that important. These knotty hickory repositories signify abundance...that God has supplied enough, not just to survive, but to thrive--that when we follow Him, He will not forsake, instead He will bless.
Maybe I'm reading too much into a chunk of wood, but you know, quite awhile back the same One that blessed me with these timber receptacles hung on another piece of wood and I'm pretty sure that any altar, any relic, any thing that can make me remember even for a moment how much He loves me, how much He loves you and just how far He will go to redeem what is His is a thing worth exclaiming over....