An advantage of being the middle child in a family of five children was that I could play with the younger kids when my inner child needed attention. I could hang out with the older kids when I felt my younger siblings were beneath me.
Christmas time brought out the child in me. I loved to curl up on the couch with my younger sister and brother as we watched all the Christmas cartoons. One of our favourites was “Frosty the Snowman.” I liked Jimmy Durante’s voice; my younger sister liked the story, and my younger brother liked the annual tradition. I always laughed at Frosty’s childlike wonder whenever he was awakened back to life by placing a magical hat upon his head. “Happy Birthday!” he would exclaim.
Everything was new and exciting and full of delightful possibilities. Good, bad or indifferent, Frosty’s past was forgotten in those first joyful moments of being fully alive. He was a new man and was free to enjoy his new life until a pesky villain or high winds removed the hat from his head once again.
As Christians, we need not fear that we will lose our new life because a precariously placed hat topples off. Isaiah 61:10 assures us, “He has clothed me with the garments of salvation; he has covered me with the robe of righteousness…” His newness is sealed upon our hearts, and it can’t be removed by outward circumstances. He extends His offer of a new start to anyone who would ask.
We need not wait for momentous occasions such as birthdays or New Year’s Day to start anew. Jesus promises us in Revelation 21:5 – “Behold, I am making all things new” Present, active tense. God is making all things new!
2 Corinthians 5:17 – “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
We are a new creation; the old creation was crucified on the cross, it is dead and buried. Don’t accept the lie of the enemy that because you slipped back into an old habit that the old creation has somehow reanimated itself. Your old man is not a zombie from an old horror flick. As Doctor McCoy was famous in saying, “He’s dead, Jim.” Do not give yourself the luxury of not living in your new identity.
Although the following quote by Corrie Ten Boom is about forgiving others, it also applies to our ability to walk away from our past by the power of God’s forgiveness. Keep living in your new identity and ignore the occasional twitch of rigour mortis from the old man. The old man is dead, long live the new creature.
“If you have ever seen a country church with a bell in the steeple, you will remember that to get the bell ringing you have to tug awhile. Once it has begun to ring, you merely maintain the momentum. As long as you keep pulling, the bell keeps ringing. Forgiveness is letting go of the rope. It is just that simple. But when you do so, the bell keeps ringing. Momentum is still at work. However, if you keep your hands off the rope, the bell will begin to slow and eventually stop.” – Corrie Ten Boom
At this very moment, as you read these words, all things are being made new. How you choose to steward this moment is up to you. Never take this precious gift of newness for granted. Cherish the potential of ‘all things new,’ through the power of Christ’s resurrection. Relationships strained, mistakes made, sins you commit – bring them to the cross. Leave them there and don’t pick them up again, no matter how tempted you might be. Treasure the gift of newness He grants you every day.
Ephesian 4:21-24 – “Assuming that you have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus, to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.”
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All Bible verses attributed to the ESV version unless otherwise indicated.
Until Next Week
2018 Katherine Walden
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