Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Making Way for the New

     It’s the time of year that we purge our home.  School is wrapping up, fun is around the corner, and it just seems right to start the summer fresh.  So, while in my daughter’s closet cleaning and filling trash bags to the brim, one after the other, I couldn’t help but feel like it was wrong to throw so much away.  We do this serious purging only once a year or so, and she has outgrown so many of the things that we were taking out, but it still just seemed like so much, so wasteful. 

     God has shown me a great deal in the past year and a half.  His promises, that I always have had, have finally become mine.  He has revealed to me that His love is enough and that I only need to go to Him for my needs, no one else satisfies like Jesus.  While cleaning He revealed something else.  In order for me to have a place to store these truths in my heart and mind, I have to let go of the old.  The things I have outgrown need to be purged.  It’s not wasteful, it’s time.

You, however, did not come to know Christ that way. 21Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. 22You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.  Eph. 4:20-24

     As long as I continue to store my old ways, lack of self control, impatience, self-pity, selfishness, the list goes on.  I can’t possibly take down the new ways from the shelf and try them out.  They are waiting in limbo for a place to call their own.  Sure, I use them sometimes, more than I used to, but until they have a permanent place, I won’t readily reach for them.  I’ll keep reaching for the old raggedy, worn-out methods that are cluttering my heart and mind.  It’s not wasteful to dispose of the old, sometimes it’s necessary.  


Susan said...
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Susan said...

Great visual! This reminds me of God's promise to give us new things, new everything. - "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!" 2 Cor. 5:17. Also this from Isaiah 43: “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.”

How do I make way for the new things? How do I get rid of the old habits and worn out ways? When I asked this I thought of Romans 12 - "Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will."

I know we can renew our minds by reading the word, by talking to God, by practicing gratitude and patience, and mercy. By remembering where we came from and where we are going. Keeping our eyes on Jesus, not all the obstacles in this life. One might say it's just positive thinking, but I know from experience that without the work of the Holy Spirit, without the freeing love of God, it's impossible for me personally to stay positive. I can always say "Yeah, but..." But in Christ, and only in Christ, (the creator of the universe, me, and every little complicated atom), everything is "Yes!" Everything is possible. Everything is mine. Why keep the old stuff?

At first, I started to write about how nice it is to open a closet, see it neatly organized, be able to reach out and get the thing you want, and actually pull it out without having to disrupt a pile of stuff on top of it or near it. What a satisfying feeling. Maybe one could compare that with being "able to test and approve what God's will is - his good, pleasing, and perfect will." To be able to search our mind and hearts for the answers to life's predicaments, and not have to sift through the chaotic mess of old ways of thinking. To clearly see what his will is.

Christi K. said...

I should have let you write the blog, ha ha. That was exactly what I thought of next after I wrote I thought of the same thing you did. I have to focus on the new instead of the old. I leave the old behind mentally, I make an effort to think about the good things I have been taught.

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things.