It saddens me when I see new home owners with sledge hammers knocking out cabinets, vanities, other structures, because they are not the latest style or fashion. If the old wasn’t efficient or workable for their family, I would understand. And even if they want to spend their money in whatever way they want, it’s not my business. But what’s wrong with unscrewing the cabinet from the wall and setting it on the curb for those who can not afford new? Our society has trained us to expect, demand, and feel we are entitled to the latest and the best. Our economy drives this concept of marketing. It is a time of throw-away products and people.
I like the concept of the lady on the TV show, Rehab Addict. She re-purposes old things and shops at salvage yards. Her remodeled homes are always tasteful, full of character, and usually very elegant. Her philosophy in practice keeps things out of the landfill, and provides history and continuity.
I like old things. My house looks like the Rehab Addict finished remodeling it, and I think it’s beautiful. It’s a little quirky. I have a vertical support beam that was originally used because of budget constraints, but has stayed because of the memories associated with it. My young grandson climbed it often and perched at ceiling level with his feet gripping the pole. Christmas time found it wrapped in ornaments designed just for it. I considered using it (and wished I had) to record children’s heights and birthdays, but didn’t want to mark it up. Now the cat uses it for a scratching post. Someday, when she finally scratches it to a toothpick size, I will need to change it for a new post or ceiling beam, but it will be from necessity not from needing a more fashionable one. Didn’t God command the Israelites to pile up rocks in remembrance of His deliverance? I guess my post is like a pile of rocks for my past.
It is interesting to see remodels in Europe. People are combing the historical districts for homes that still have original elements of the past. They get rid of more recent renovations. Our sense of value changes with culture and location.
There is a wonderful phenomenon of old people being re-purposed. As I grew older, I could no longer physically do the work I once did, so I went back to college to earn my bachelors degree. I came into the tech age, and learned new systems. This was more suited to my capabilities. I also found other people being re-purposed. One woman was finishing her degree, had purchased land in India, and was starting an orphanage there. Another was founding a chapel chain with her husband for truck drivers. Our families have grown up, our finances are stable, and we have time available. Thank God that we are not throw-away people, and are of benefit to His kingdom. He gives us a new song to sing. And He restores the lives of people of all ages who need a new beginning, those who have lost careers, loves ones, and those of shattered dreams. All we need do is dare to hope.