May 31, 2016
There’s something fresh and new and even exciting about turning over the page on the calendar to reveal a new month. I know the demarcation of one month from another is sort of an artificially designated social convenience. Even so, the block grid with 28-31 new days on it speaks about new possibilities, new discoveries, new opportunities.
The apostle exhorts us to walk in newness of life. I think what that means (among other things, perhaps) is that because the Lamb of God has been slain for His people, everything- really, everything- changes. Work,play , creativity, relationships, marriage, family, pleasure, public and civic affairs, even suffering take on new dimensions, new meaning. God’s amazing grace opens up new vistas, new areas of life to explore and develop and exploit in service to God and each other.
See, I am making all things new! the triumphant Lamb cries out in the Revelation. All things. Let that percolate in your mind for a bit. Everything. There’s nothing in our lives or our experience that should remain untouched, not influenced in some way by God’s amazing grace. Or, to paraphrase Dutch statesman and educator Abraham Kuyper (1837-1920), there’s not a single corner of creation that Christ doesn’t point to and cry “Mine!”
Sometimes it’s hard to see, I’ll admit. Pain, frustration, even downright evil mar the face of the earth. People- and in some part of the world especially the people of God- suffer terribly. So we’re called to live in hope: to fix our eyes, not on what is seen, but what’s unseen- the coming kingdom- and, meanwhile, to each light our little candle, to penetrate the darkness where we are with love, laughter, good cheer, mercy, purity, truth and kindness. And to await the sunrise.
Hebrews 12:1-3 (NIV)
12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.