It is always refreshing to start something new. There is a certain excitement in thoughts of reaching the future that we desire from a new starting place in life. To be able to begin again with a clear heart and spirit on a new white sheet of paper with unlimited possibilities in front of us.
Our biggest challenge is to actually start with the freedom that we have in front of us and focus on those new and improved possibilities. Often we let the past color too much of our new start just to fill in the unknowns of our plan with familiar answers in the name of reaching our goals in less time and with less effort. So it is with our lives in the freedom and power of our forgiveness.
A Brand New Me
Of all the strengths from our relationship with Jesus Christ the most powerful is that of forgiveness. Each day becomes a new opportunity in our lives to live out and share God’s love with others.
If this were really true in our lives, then why do we struggle so much with the freedom of a new life? Could it be that our old life had some advantages to us ?
We were comfortable, everyone knew what to expect of us, no explaining to do, no different actions to take. People appreciated and accepted us in our flawed state, and we were all good with one another.
Wow, I am glad we got that aligned I thought this was going to get complicated for a minute …… We are all comfortable in our flawed lives and living at or below the expectations of others and ourselves not to mention God.
The rich young ruler in Mark 10 – lived his life to the best of his ability and sought Jesus humbly to determine how he might obtain eternal life but his real motive was of human intent in that he wanted an eternal life with the qualities of this life? He calls Jesus good and the next statement is often taken as just that a statement, that by itself is true and right, but it can also be a question that Jesus poses to the young man to gage the seriousness of his intent.
“Why do you call me good?” Jesus asked. “Only God is truly good.Mark 10:18
Does he believe he is talking to God or simply a teacher that has an answer he knows he cannot get answered anywhere else? If the young man feels good about his life up to this point then certainly he has less left to do in attaining eternal life than many others right? Jesus knowing his heart confirms for him what he must do and the young man replies that he has kept the commandments to the best of his human ability for most of his life –
Looking at the man, Jesus felt genuine love for him.Mark 10:21
This verse is a great comfort in that Jesus loves us beyond our physical capability in this life. Jesus love for this young man led him to point out the gap in this man’s life between his physical and spiritual actions. Jesus told him go and release all that he had and the text says he had many possessions and he could not part with them on faith alone. Jesus uses money again here to illustrate the physical and spiritual struggle that we experience in our day-to-day lives.
The good things seem almost easy and yet the things we have neglected or failed at we would rather skip. These are the very things God wants us to focus on and give from our spirits beyond our physical selves.
Time, money, energy, talent …… still not enough because the spiritual requires an acknowledgment of God being first – dependence on Him. If we can reflect on our past and plan forward giving him control of our lives then we can accomplish many things that are not physically possible today because we have not allowed God to make them possible for us.
26 The disciples were astounded. “Then who in the world can be saved?” they asked. 27 Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But not with God. Everything is possible with God.”
Our New Year is made up of many new days that are full of opportunity and potential ALL made possible in God.
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