My husband recently repainted the main level of our house, and we took the calendar, clock, canvases, and children’s artwork off the walls before the work began. I was leafing through a stack of mail when I noticed that the funky old hanger that displayed a favorite work of my son’s from kindergarten now held the lovely dot-work image of a large white rabbit that my 8-year-old daughter recently completed.
“Oh,” she replied in answer to my inquiry about the change, “Mom, I thought you’d want to hang up one of my beautiful pictures.”
"If God had a refrigerator, your picture would be on it. If He had a wallet, your photo would be in it. He sends you flowers every spring and a sunrise every morning. ... Face it, friend. He is crazy about you!”
— Max Lucado, best-selling inspirational author
I had to laugh – an oversize rendition of an owl she had recently completed was the only item on the front of our refrigerator. But her brother’s masterpiece had been hanging on the wall (not “just” the fridge) near our kitchen table, and she didn’t see this set-up as equal billing.
No matter our age or stage in life, don’t we all feel this way sometimes? Left out, left behind, or a bit looked over? If we stop to consider our blessings, we quickly discover that there are too many to count! But sometimes, deep down, we may still wonder where we stand with God.
At a certain age, you may start to feel that life’s adventures are in the past, and God’s attention – the “space on his fridge,” if you will – is reserved for the hip, the now, the young. It can be hard to believe you are truly God’s masterpiece if you don’t feel his light shining on the work you are doing right now.
The work of our hands and hearts is different at every age and stage, but God doesn’t value the contributions of one generation over another; He values your faith, your service, your actions, and your gifts now, as much as He did when you were a child or young adult.
God tells us in Isaiah 46:4, “And I will still be carrying you when you are old. Your hair will turn gray, and I will still carry you. I made you, and I will carry you to safety.”
Psalm 92:12-15 says: “But the godly will flourish like palm trees and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon. For they are transplanted to the Lord’s own house. They flourish in the courts of our God. Even in old age they will still produce fruit; they will remain vital and green. They will declare, ‘The Lord is just! He is my rock! There is no evil in him!’”
The reason God carries you and causes you to flourish as you age is not because you are a burden! He blesses you because you are His beloved child, created in His very image, and even as you age, He has a purpose and a plan for you. Amen to this good news!
As it turns out, I am a collector of odd items like vintage wooden hangers, and I had an extra on hand so both masterworks could be curated on the wall near our kitchen table – equal representation for each of my children. When you have such a moment of wondering, of questioning, whether you still have a meaningful place in God’s heart (and on His refrigerator), remember these things:
• God knew you before you were born. Jeremiah 1:5
• He gives you strength whenever you falter. Isaiah 40:28-29
• He longs to hear from you, and promises to walk with you daily. Psalm 145:18-19
• He has gone before you to prepare a place in Heaven. John 14:3
When you feel alone or less than, left behind or forgotten, know that God loved you when He created you, and He loves you still. Always has and always, always will. And your picture? It is right there on His refrigerator; not the “you” of bygone days, but the “you” in the mirror, smiling out at Him exactly as you are right now.
Jesus loves you!
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