So the conversation with David and Mephibosheth is wrapped up. David has declared restoration for Mephibosheth and promised to allow him the privilege of eating at his table with him from now on. Wow, what a great life sentence, huh?
So how do we, as Mephibosheth, go from being with no hope, an outcast, or an addict – - let’s put some other real issues in here as well — an over-eater, an alcoholic, a person who always has to be in a relationship to feel like they’re somebody — I’m sure you can think of some other issues to add to the list — to being restored? What does that look like? Well, let’s first do some research on the word restored.
The Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary defines restored as: to bring back into a former or original state, to renew. Hmmmm, there was a link on the word “renew,” so I looked that word up. OMG, love this: “to make new spiritually, regenerate.” So that’s the English definition; now let’s move on to the Hebrew and Greek definitions.
Wow, this word is so rich and explains the problem I’ve been having coming up with a simple answer to give you about how to reach out and accept the promise of restoration that our King offers to us when we come to Him. Follow me for just a few minutes and pick up your shovels; this is some deep but rich stuff.
The Hebrew translation for restored is shuwb and the Hebrew concordance says: “The basic meaning of the verb ‘restored’ is movement back to the point of departure.” Another definition for restored is: to be safe in mind, body or estate. “The Hebrew root denotes perfection in the sense that a condition or action is complete.”
Let’s put the brakes on here for a second. So that last one tells us that to be restored denotes completeness, which in the case of David restoring all of Mephibosheth’s Grandfather’s stuff back to Mephibosheth was a completed restoration in that it was just a transfer of material stuff. The type of restoration that I’ve been referring to is more of a spiritual/emotional restoration and that’s the one that is definitely a process.
Now let’s go take a look at the Greek definition for this word: To give back; to reconstitute in health, organization and/or home – hmmm, that’s interesting – and then finally, to return to a former condition.
So when we are referring to restoration of physical, emotional and spiritual health, it’s kind of like an old piece of furniture needing to be restored. It needs to be stripped of its old varnish, sanded down again and again until you can see the original pattern in the wood. It’s a process, one that is not easy by any means, and oftentimes very painful, but oh the beauty when you get to the original condition. See, God did not create us with addictions, disorders of any kind, illnesses, et cetera.
Sure, there are generational cycles, tendencies that need to be fought off harder than others, but He waits for you and I, just as David waited for Mephibosheth, to restore us to His creation, and to give back to us all that the enemy has stolen.
So the real simple answer is: It’s a process, not a microwave solution. You can’t just twitch your nose, clap your hands three times, click your heels, come to Jesus and be completely restored. Sure, once you accept Him as the One who died for your sins, you are in His family; you belong to Him. He is the potter; your heart is the clay. He is the refinisher; your life is the piece of furniture.
But the longer we wait to begin being restored, the more junk we put in our trunk and therefore, the more molding and refinishing required. But that’s not a bad thing because the process is a beautiful thing and produces incredible transformation.
I understand this process of restoration so much better because of my S.O.S. (season of singleness) and it took some time before I was restored to emotional health so I could enjoy relationships that were good for me and good to me, but He who began that work was faithful to complete it!