April 12, 2012
This Is New
New is different. New is scary. New is unknown. New is threatening. What may be surprising to you is that new is God. I didn’t say God is new, as if he were something just created. I said new is God – newness is in God’s character, in other words.
But “No!”, you object, “God is the same yesterday, today, and forever!” Yes, he is the same, but God is always new in the way he does things; he is always new in the ways he relates to us and speaks to us; he is always new because he is an infinitely creative God which produces infinite newness for us.
God’s Word talks about a new heaven and new earth, a new covenant, new heart, new spirit, a new creation, a new self, a new command, a new song, new life, new name, new day, new teaching, new man, new attitude, new order, and new birth.
Not enough examples? How about this? Lamentations 3:22-23 says, “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Think about the implications of God’s love and compassion toward us being new every morning.
How about Isaiah 43:18-19a – “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing!”
Still not convinced that God is all about doing new things? Check out Revelation 21:5 – “He who was seated on the throne said, ‘I am making everything new!’” Did you catch the word “everything” in that verse? It should shout to you loud and clear.
Brennan Manning writes in The Ragamuffin Gospel, “When God’s love is taken for granted, we paint Him into a corner and rob Him of the opportunity to love us in a NEW AND SURPRISING way, and faith begins to shrivel and shrink. When I become so spiritually advanced that Abba is old hat, then the Father has been had, Jesus has been tamed, the Spirit has been corralled, and the Pentecostal fire has been extinguished. Evangelical faith is the antithesis of lukewarmness: It always means a profound dissatisfaction with our present state.
“In faith there is movement and development. Each day something is new. To be Christian, faith has to be new – that is, alive and growing. It cannot be static, finished, settled. When Scripture, prayer, worship, ministry become routine, they are dead. When I conclude that I can now cope with the awful love of God, I have headed for the shallows to avoid the deeps. I could more easily contain Niagara Falls in a teacup than I can comprehend the wild, uncontainable love of God.”
So the question is, what new thing has God been doing in your life? Are you resisting change or embracing it? Are you pushing through your fear in order to step out in faith or have you become calcified in your comfortable spiritual life? Have you become “familiar” with God or do you still tremble when you come into the presence of the Almighty?
God is doing a new thing. In fact, God is all about newness. He is making everything new! Does that threaten you or excite you?
Love in Christ,