Lessons from A Garage Sale

As I write this I’m finishing up the fifth hour of our first garage sale since we moved into this home a little more than four years ago. Linda is off to a Ladies’ Conference so I’m doing this solo, though she did the lion’s share of setting it up and snookered me into handling the sale.  That’s OK … I’m keeping the money! 

Garage sales are a mixed bag for me emotionally. People are buying my “treasures” (translate: junk) for far less than I think they are worth. On the other hand, I know that my “treasures” which are no longer functional or needed by me, will now find new life in someone else’s storehouse of treasures.  A man just walked out of here with our old fruit and vegetable dehydrator.  We used that thing for apples, bananas, deer jerky and a couple of other things and always thought it was more effort than it was worth.  It sat on the shelf for years and collected a quarter inch layer of dust until today … when it will be taken home and carefully cleaned and useful again!  Then there was the lady the size of an SUV who was buying handfuls of clothing made for a mini-cooper … what’s with that?  I didn’t ask, fearing for my safety with Linda not here to defend me.  One man bought a leaf blower down the road but it had no charger … so he found one of those little power packs here that fit.  I have no idea whether the polarity is correct and it may smoke when he plugs it in … but he didn’t seem to care.  A pregnant lady sat on my floor in the garage for about 10 minutes.  She was hot and tired.  I kept asking her if she was OK … just what I need … the opportunity to deliver a baby for a strange woman on my garage floor.  That would ruin my garage sale!  I breathed a sigh of relief as she waddled down the driveway to her vehicle.  She was a nice young woman though :-).   I liked her better than the woman with the poor excuse for a dog that kept trying to lift its leg on my table legs.  I was about to offer to feed that dog to my cat when she decided to make her purchases and leave.  I sold a couple of necklaces by telling the women that they looked marvelous wearing them.  I tried it with a burly looking guy who had hands filthy with grease … if looks could kill I’d be dead.

All of this to say that garage sales remind me of one aspect of our ministry with MCE; that of church re-planting. In re-planting a church we are sometimes saddened by the loss of vitality and strength that a church has experienced. We are grieved by the damage that they have sustained and the fact that some have cast it aside. Yet the church is still a “treasure” to the Lord. MCE takes the discarded, weakened, damaged and used up ministry and works to restore it to a place of usefulness and effective outreach. We currently have 14 projects in the mission and seven of them are re-plants (four of them relatively recent ones). That which was lost and in danger of being cast off has been reclaimed and given renewed usefulness for His glory!  I hope that my customers enjoy their new found “treasures” … and I hope that the Lord, the Head of the Church enjoys the revival of those seven ministries!