When we made an appointment with the Realtor to see the house which would eventually be our first home, our (at the time) 11-year-old daughter and I took one look at the inside and turned right around and walked out, leaving my wife inside to apologize.
“I’m not buying that piece’a junk,” I told her.
“Honey,” my wife patiently replied. “Don’t look at it the way it is now. Think of what it can be.”
She’s always been better at seeing the potential in something or someone than I am.
We went back in and took another look. There were newspapers piled to the ceiling.
“They’ll have all this moved out by the time you move in,” the Realtor smiled.
I saw pink walls, yellow walls, blue walls, pea-green walls.
“Nothing a little paint can’t fix,” my wife grinned.
The floors were a mess, but to that she smiled, “Your parents are gonna help us with new flooring.”
The curtains and the light fixtures were something out of the 70s sitcom “Good Times.”
“I can buy new curtains, and your dad already said he’d replace the light fixtures.”
“It’s too expensive,” I glumly stated.
“I’m sure the owners will work with you on the price,” the Realtor answered.
And before you know it, I’d convinced the owners to come down $15,000 on their price and pay half of closing, and the house was ours. We spent several years and several thousand dollars fixing it up, and made it beautiful.
Now my daughter, son-in-law and grandson live there, and it’s still as sturdy and beautiful as ever.
I didn’t see the potential, but my wife did.
When my son and I visited Oxford on our trip to Europe last March, we came upon this field.
“What do you see?” someone asked.
“A large field,” we replied.
“That’s not what ‘Harry Potter’ author J.K. Rowling saw. This was the field which inspired her to create the game of Quidditch.”
We saw an empty field. She saw an amazing fantasy game to incorporate into her latest work of literary art.
God is the ultimate artist, and He delights Himself in creating beauty from ashes. He sees the potential in all of us.
I’m currently writing a book about the amazing testimonies of some of my family and friends. I had tried to write a book for years, but just couldn’t do it. This book was my wife’s idea and she never doubted for a second I had it in me, even though I’ve had mountains of doubt.
You may not think too highly of yourself but God sees what you can be and not what you are. If you can grab hold of that, and then begin to seek His will for your life, it’ll absolutely rock your world.
Don’t settle for drab when you can have delightful. Don’t settle for boring when you can have beautiful. Don’t settle for awful when you can have amazing.
I’m not talking about money, I’m talking about finding purpose. Begin to surround yourself with starry-eyed, sweat-and-blood dreamers who are determined to make their lives worthwhile.
I was a boring, depressed teenager in a small town, now I’m a husband, dad and grandpa, working in a wonderful ministry where my life has purpose, and living on five gorgeous acres in the country.
Now, some would laugh at my statement. They would mock my idea of “Heaven on Earth.”
“That’s what you’re so proud of?” they would scoff in their thousand dollar suit from their high-rise apartment.
But I’m deliriously happy, which is more than millions of others can say.
Don’t settle for second best. You’re better than that. God believes in you and so do I.
Don’t accept today as your fate; draw a picture of yourself ten years from now and then set out to become that person.
Grab hold of your dream and don’t let go!