A few weeks ago, in my mother’s house, I found a Christmas ornament from 1996 that was lost in her office.  Unlike the others, this one was never wrapped up and put away each year to annually find its way on the Christmas tree. Two decades of neglect left it looking more like a relic instead of something to ring in great tidings of joy! Still, that not so shiny silver bell somehow managed to minister to me.

As we come to the end of this year, many of us are at a loss trying to figure out what happened to 2017? I’m confident that I am not alone with “to dos” left undone and more than a few things that fell by the wayside.

 As I polished the “lost” ornament, I was reminded that God restores us as well. Through Christ, we can not only renew our minds, but God can restore whatever we may lack including the time lost for those things He purposed for our lives.  The sin that continually tarnishes us and would keep us from our destiny, our Savior’s blood wipes away.

It may have taken twenty years, but “Christmas 1996” is finally on a tree.

Never give up on your goals and aspirations that seem long-lost. Whatever we lose (or was stolen) our Father’s love can surely restore!

Our faith.

Our family.

Our finances.

Our hope!

If you feel like you’ve lost more than can ever be found, I challenge you to trust God. Our Savior descended from Heaven not only for an eternal promise, but that we can live fruitful and meaningful lives now.

Amazing Grace!
How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me
I once was lost but now am found,
Was blind but now I see.
John Newton 1779 

My times are in Your hand;
Deliver me from the hand of my enemies,
And from those who persecute me.
Make Your face shine upon Your servant;
Save me for Your mercies’ sake.
Psalm 31: 15-16 NKJV

He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake
Psalm 23:3 NKJV

By Lilka Finley Raphael

Author, Editor, Gardner, Photographer, Pharmacist


  1. Oh’ how I thank our God for being a restorer of what we lack including the time that we’ve lost for those things He has purposed for our lives. This reminds me of Romans 8:28; one of my favorite verses. I also thank our God for using you in the mighty way that he has chosen. Continue being obedient, for you are truly one of God’s vessels chosen for such a time as this. Blessings to you and your family during this Christmas season Lilka.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Merry Christmas Stacy! Romans is one of my favorite books in the Bible. It holds so MUCH wisdom. Thank you as always for the kind words. I am doing my best to be obedient and hopeful for what God has in the future. Blessings to you and yours! Peace and Joy this Christmas season!


  2. This reminds me that sometimes we think we are lost or forgotten then God sents someone to encourage us ( polish our spirit) to get back in the game of life or in this case, back on the tree. Lol
    Thanks my friend for the reminder!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is such a precious reminder and a great object lesson, Lilka! I am right there in the very mess of lost time that you describe, but I am fully trusting God to polish it up and make my life what He has intended all along!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. And God will in His timing. God has restored many of my “messes” and a couple of them have been HUGE! It took years (and honestly a bit of heartache) but the outcome was far better than I could have ever imagined. Time and trust ultimately get us where God wants us to be. Merry Christmas and Enjoy your weekend! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. He has done the same for me! I have been often reminded lately to look at my “Ebenezers” – my memories of wonderful and magnificent works He has done in the past. There are so many that when I focus on them, I no longer have room for discouragement. 🙂 Merry Christmas to you, too, and have a lovely weekend!

        Liked by 1 person

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