Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Lessons from an old box

2 Corinthians 5:17 (NCV) If anyone belongs to Christ, there is a new creation. The old things have gone; everything is made new!

Over the past several weeks I’ve been sifting through boxes of stuff collected during my high school and college years. At first, it was kind of fun to go through and look at some of the pictures of friends, read over old cards and letters. But the more time I spent with the “stuff” in those boxes, the more I saw a person I didn’t even recognize…and that really made me sad. Why had I allowed myself to get as far away from the truth?

It was during those years I fell far away from everything I had been taught in my Christian home and in church. One defining moment, after hearing 5 tiny words, would change “my perspective” on the way I chose to live my life from that point forward. I guess those 5 words weren’t so “tiny” after all. The thought of what was said caused me to spin farther and farther out of control with each passing year until “who I was” became unrecognizable. During that time, I didn’t go to church and I only talked to God when I wanted to “save myself” from getting in a pile of trouble. You know those prayers right? The ones that go something like this… “Oh God please help me and I will NEVER do this again.”

The memories contained in the boxes spoke of the things I’d do to not be defined by the 5 tiny words said that one summer afternoon in my friend’s living room. I sat among the boxes in disbelief wondering “when did I decide what someone else said or thought about me was so important?” Tears fell from my eyes and I thanked God for pulling out of the muck and mire of my old life.

Today, I am a completely different person…and it’s all because of Jesus Christ and His redeeming work on Calvary. When I said “NO” to this world and “YES” to Jesus, I became a new creation in Him. The old me is gone – remembered no more. I have been given a new life, living now under the guidance, prompting and teaching of the Holy Spirit.

Spending a few days in the “boxes of my old life” made me see that Christ has given me new life in every sense of the word…I have a new perspective on how I choose to live my life and whose voice I choose to listen to and respond.

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