On my 60th birthday (Which is further in the rear view mirror than I would like) my son Johnny presented me with a replica of the church I was pastoring at the time. He had spent hours working meticulously re-creating the building out of paper and tape. While he was working on this gift, I would from time to time walk into his room. He would immediately cover his work so I couldn’t see what he was up to. On the Sunday of my birthday he gave me his creation in front of our congregation. I was quite surprised, it brought tears to my eyes as I hugged and thanked him for such a precious gift.
Johnny spent many hours, days, even weeks making different projects. I would take him to hardware stores and he would get ideas for his next creations. He would re-create calk guns, tubes of calk, tape measures (that actually worked), toilet seats, anything that would catch his eye. There was a building that he would pass by on the school bus every day; that he watched being built. He would come home and build what he had observed the construction crew had done. From the frame, to the walls, to the parking lot and lights. He even made furniture for the inside of the offices. All of these projects were made from paper and tape. Through the years we purchased many reams of paper and countless rolls of tape.
Each creation was very special to Johnny. There were times when people would try to buy something he had made, but Johnny would never part with them. There were, although, times that he would make things and give them as gifts. There are teacher, school aides, and family members that received a t-shirt, or a hoodie that Johnny would customize for them. Each one was precious to their creator. Johnny would look at his completed projects with great love and pride, and in his eyes they were perfect.
King David says in Psalm 139:14 “I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.” Just like Johnny made his creations with the utmost care, The Creator of the universe has put us together in a meticulous fashion. What we look at as flaws, God looks at as precious. God’s ways are not our ways, and His thoughts are not our thoughts. God has made you just the way you are for a purpose. Only you, can be you. With all our “imperfections and deficiencies.”
With all the “Unique Congenital Malformations” that Johnny was born with, only he could have impacted the lives that he did. The weaknesses that the world saw were the strengths that God did use in his lifetime. The same goes for every person on this earth, we are all unique, we have each been created by God for a unique purpose that only we can fulfill. God makes no mistakes. Actually God chooses to use the people that the world would not see as useful. 1 Corinthians 1:26-27 “ For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called: But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;”
Every one of us at times wish we were created a little different than the way God put us together. Our son Johnny, at times, would express to us that he just wanted to be “normal.” However, God has created each of us in the exact way that we can be used for His glory. As a matter of fact, He isn’t finished with us yet. I know He has a lot of work to do on me, but while He is working, I pray I can be the best “ME” I can be. As He looks at each of His creations, He looks with love and pride, and sees each of us as perfect.
To read more about Johnny and the special spirit he possessed, you can purchase a copy of “Finding Grace and Peace IN SPITE OF Trials and Tragedy; The Johnny Ashley Story” at Amazon.com by clicking on the link below.