Every Friday, I join an online Christian writing community, Five Minute Friday. We are given a one-word prompt and write – unscripted, unedited, pure free-write – for 5 minutes.
The prompt this week is ‘Chance’
I work in a charity shop called Second Chance. People donate their clothing, books, music, film, toys, ornaments – anything that has outlived its usefulness to the owner, but could still be useful to another.
Some of these second-hand donated items are deemed ‘not good enough’ to sell from our shelves, so these, which still deserve to be more useful than landfill, are donated on for other companies to recycle and reuse in other ways. For example, some coats we donate on to a local homeless shelter and towels and blankets go to PDSA and similar uses. Others may be sold on as rags and metal is also recycled.
We all have different ideas about what is good enough to sell, what is worth buying – and of course, one man’s junk is another man’s treasure. Sometimes what is old is worth more than what is new. An item’s worth is not always of monetary equivalence either – many of us have objects that are of enormous sentimental value to a family or individual, that another would consider ‘old tat’.
But for many varied reasons, our shop is blessed with a great many bags of donations every week and it is our privilege to sell these items on, to bless new homes for a fraction of their original price, and to give the items themselves a second chance to be valuable. They may go on to have a third, fourth or more chances too.
For those who know the film ‘Toy Story’, I often feel that same panic and nostalgia that Woody feels for himself and the other toys, for these donated items moving on to be loved again, rather than rotting in an attic.
How much more valuable are we? Jesus told us not to worry about what to eat, drink and wear etc, because our loving Father cares for us. He said we are more valuable than the sparrows. We are also more valuable than the clothes and furniture that we care so much about. We are more valuable than money itself. How much is a life worth?
God loves us so much that He gave us His Son – surely that is the most treasured and valuable possession that He had – He gave Him up so that whoever believes in Him, and His death and resurrection – so that that little me or you – could have eternal, abundant life.
What is more valuable than life?
Abundant, eternal life.
He gave the most valuable of His own to save the most valuable of your own.
By this He forgave you, not once, but, if you are anything like me, He forgives you again and again and again. I have had multiples of second chances!
How often do I give others even one second chance?
Do I ever give another?
May He teach me to hold lightly not only to the material things around me, but to not hold on to resentments and unforgiveness at all.
Let me be one who is willing to give as many second chances to others, as God is giving to me.