Ever started a new job, gone to a new school, moved to a new house and thought – This is my new start, this time I’ll get it right. I’m going to be perfect and everyone will admire and love me? Ever done that and then after an hour, or a day or a week or a month or even a year looked back and wondered what happened to the master plan? I suspect you have, I know I have. The trouble is that we take ourselves with us. There’s a phrase “wherever you go, there you are.” And all the dieting, meditation, exercising, new wardrobe and other self-help can’t really fix what’s inside us. We can get a veneer and put on a front but without a radical change on the inside, our outside eventually shrivels.
What I need is not the old me in a marvellous new life but a new me in whatever life. I was looking on Google at the phrase above, lots of talk there about being the answer to your own situation. If I can just realise the potential I have and activate it. If I can get to grips with not worrying and focus on being all my issues would vanish. That’s good advice but so long as ‘I’ am the answer to my problems then I actually have a huge problem because I am fatally flawed. We all are. There’s only ever been one flawless person.
That’s a very tall command, something totally impossible for me to do. If I try to do it alone that is. However, if I go to the source of that command and ask Him to help me, to show me, to teach me. Then it’s still hard but no longer impossible. Still a challenge but definitely attainable. I guess there’s not a lot of interest in the world about being holy. That’s more than sad, it’s tragic because holy people are truly generous with their time and energy, finances, possessions. Holy people are truly merciful and loving. Holy people are truly a pleasure to be around having a joy and enthusiasm that is unique. Maybe that doesn’t sound like the Christians you know, but it should because they – we – I should be filled with the fruit of the Holy Spirit.
Ephesians 4 talks about what we should be like as we grow and mature in Christ. These verses speak strongly about being fixed, about being new, about how we face our lives.
20 That, however, is not the way of life you learned 21 when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus.22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Not my plan, not yours but God’s master plan for our lives. To be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Hands up if you want that.