By Rae Lynn DeAngelis

My husband and I have decided to protect the investment of our home through ongoing maintenance and repairs, including the occasional face-lift, replacing or refurbishing of outdated fixtures, flooring, and cabinets.

After our ninety pound golden retriever went to his eternal home in glory (yes, all dogs go to heaven), we realized our scratched and weathered hardwood floors needed a bit of love and attention. We were ill-equipped to tackle the project on our own so we hired a flooring expert. The plan was to sand-away the old surface and re-stain the stripped hardwood with a more up to date color and finish.

Refurbishing hardwood floors is a messy and taxing project. To be honest, we began to wonder if the chaos was really worth it.

As we neared the end of the project, the flooring expert asked us if we would like the shoe molding to be painted white (like our other wall trim) or would we like it to be stained the same as the new floor. Since this was our first experience refurbishing hardwood floors, we hadn’t a clue as to which application would be best. The flooring guy said, “If it was me, I would stain them. Paint eventually chips, peals, and flakes. Stain lasts forever, and in my opinion, it’s a more beautiful finish.”

We took his advice and now our floors look amazing! It was definitely worth the time and money we had invested.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).

Our LORD paid a steep price to redeem you and me from our former way of life. It’s an investment that’s worth protecting, don’t you think?

“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh” (Ezekiel 36:26).

Although our hearts are new when we surrender our lives to Jesus, old thoughts and behaviors still cling to us for a while. After all… accepting Christ takes only a moment. Becoming like Christ takes a lifetime.

Like any makeover project, Jesus begins by stripping away old layers of worldly influence: deceptive lies, toxic thoughts, and destructive behaviors. Yes, it might get messy for a while, but we need to keep trusting God. Like it was with our hardwood floors, beneath the marred façade, something beautiful is waiting to shine through.

Are you protecting the investment Christ made to redeem you from your old way of life? Are you giving Him full access to renew your mind, body, and spirit?

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will’ (Romans 12:2).

Get rid of the old, and embrace the new! I promise. The transformation will be worth it in the end!

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20).