In our bedroom upstairs is a chair where I typically have my quiet time and read my Bible each day. Next to the chair is a simple table that holds a lamp, a devotional book, a couple of other books that I’m planning to read some day when I get around to it, my journal and a couple of Bibles. Inside one of those Bibles is a piece of paper. It’s edges are curled and slightly torn. It’s really more of a piece of construction paper. A couple of times over the last 13-14 years, it has almost been thrown away. That is, until someone took a closer look and realized what the paper was.
I don’t remember much about the day that it was given. I’m not sure if it was my birthday or Christmas or just some random Sunday. I do remember a certain young boy full of energy and excitement who handed me the paper that morning after church. Actually, there were three of the sheets that day and I chose to just hold on to one. As he gave it to me that morning, the young, wide-eyed boy said, “Look. I made you some stationery.”
Stationery, indeed? I could have gone to a dozen different stores in town and gotten much nicer stationery. I could have gotten great envelopes to go with them, a nicer paper and my initials embossed on the outside. I could have forked out good money to get some really expensive stationery that would impress others as they opened it. None of those would have meant more to me than these 3 simple pieces of paper.
You see, the young boy was my son, Harrison. The paper bore my initials and his name but it revealed something far more. It was a simple act of love from a son to his father. I didn’t care what that paper looked like. I care even less today. Tattered and torn and wrinkled, I’ve only used that paper to do one thing–remind me of the special gift that came that day from my son. It wasn’t his work I saw. It was his heart.
Remember that today. There is nothing–read that carefully and notice that it is not followed by a “but”–that you and I can bring to God that He can’t do better. Your best thoughts? Far below His. Your best plans for your life? Third-rate goals that can’t touch what He has planned for you. Your greatest works of art? You wouldn’t even be able to create these “tattered and torn and wrinkled” messes if He hadn’t first given you the ability. The good news is, He doesn’t want your best work. He just wants your heart. That, after all, is His master piece. I promise you that no matter how bruised or broken or torn it may be, God will treasure it. He will carry it around as His greatest gift, not because of the work you do, but because of the love it represents.