The Before & After… On Grace, Hope, & Lent

How is it we are already in Lent? March came in like a lion in our corner of the world. No matter what the weather decides to do March means the start of a journey to new life, fresh beginnings, and hope. Can I tell you a little story about hope?

Once upon a time(a few weeks ago) there was a dresser. A nine drawer cabinet with several broken drawers. It looked like they had been yanked off their runners, and now they sat tilted and crooked in their holes. It was sitting in the back of a garage. The seller apologized to us as he moved a pile of old newspapers and tools off the top so we could get a better look. The dust was thick, the wood unfinished. We fell in love.

It was perfect.

We handed the gentleman $25.00, and loaded it into the van. 

For a couple of months we’d been looking for one just like this. You see, we had a dream. It started when we wanted to switch up our living room and use our large entertainment center for another purpose. At first, it was just musings over coffee. And then (as musings often do) it became a plan.  The main thing our space needed was a TV stand. We knew from an exhaustive search of Pinterest and DIY sites, we could create our own from a dresser. It would need to fit our decor and our budget.

This one was exactly what we wanted.

The drawers rattled on the uneven tracks as we made our way home. We set it up on a safe place and began the process of restoring it. 

 It was time for a new configuration. Some of the drawers would be replaced by shelves. It need cleaning, sanding and staining. The best husband is handy that way, and before we knew it, our vision had become a reality. 

Isn’t she lovely? I’ve taken to calling her Grace. She’s my remembrancer (and maybe yours too?)  She’s a reminder for the days when I feel yanked off-track, broken and dusty. For the moments when life piles things on top and it feels like I’m not seen or heard. For the times when I forget how much I am loved and wanted, just as I am.

Our God is the one who heals, restores, and infinitely, extravagantly  loves. 

I was admiring Grace the other morning while I was sipping coffee and pondering Lent. This year is different. I’ve been wondering if I should be adding-to, but I don’t think that’s it. So I’m not picking anything up. I’ve been listening for a prompting of something to give up.  Rather than food etc. I want to let go of the time each morning I usually give to watching a program. I want to use the time differently. 

I want to change my focus. I’m hearing a call to quiet my soul and listen intentionally for the God of the universe. I want to be still. I want my before and after Lent to look different.

I want to kneel at the cross on Good Friday having a new configuration. He set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.(Psa.40:2) The stains on that wooden cross mean I can be restored and renewed. His grace and forgiveness mean I can step into the light of the resurrection in His purpose and great love.

If you’re looking for something to read for the next 40 days,  a friend of mine has written a devotional and I highly recommend it! I’m going to be reading again through Lent, I’d love for you to join me!

Click here to get a copy!

40 Voices

What are you being prompted in  for Lent?  Let us know in the comments!

    Walking with you in everyday Grace, 



  1. Wow! That turned out beautifully! I’m trying to give up clutter for 40 days, but so far I’m already behind. Baby steps!

  2. Hi, Katharine
    I love your blog
    I’ve been thinking about these days … I have a list of things to do, readings to catch up but I feel very unmotivated and unfocused.
    I want to be silent on these days, especially from the noises of social networks, devotional reading and using my time better. You inspired me with your post, thank you.

    ES- Brazil

  3. jeanwise says:

    I love how you fixed up those drawers. very nice and thanks for the mention of my Lenten book. Appreciate it!

  4. You’re welcome! So happy you have published it!