Look, new things have arrived!

So then, if anyone is in Christ, that person is part of the new creation. The old things have gone away, and look, new things have arrived!

2 Corinthians 5:17
– NC writer Derek Maul

Good morning, friends! And welcome to a new month. I have high hopes for February. It may be cold, wet, and gray, but these next 28 days are bursting with possibility!

I am a big believer in the unlimited potential of resetting and starting over. A new year, a new season, a new month, a new week, a new day. “Behold,” the King James Version phrases 2 Corinthians 5:17, “all things have become new.”

And February in particular is loaded with symbolic possibility. There are the daffodils – just a smattering as of today – already blooming in my mum’s back garden. There is the insistent pushing up and out of bulbs and buds all over this community. There is Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent (Feb 22). Then there is the ultimate reminder of the promise held in a new thing, and that is the anniversary of my first date with Rebekah, coming up February 4.

The power of framing today – or any new day – in the context of limitless possibility is the promise of Jesus. We are the privileged recipients of a unique gift, expressed beautifully in Galatians 5:1Christ has set us free for freedom. Therefore, stand firm and don’t submit to the bondage of slavery again.”

Today, then, we can move forward without being hobbled by the paralyzing restrictions of sin (sin being stuff that comes between any one of us and our relationship with God).

Choosing to follow Jesus nullifies the biggest excuse we have to remain rooted in dysfunction, the excuse that says, “I can’t help it; life is too difficult; I’m stuck; it’s not my responsibility.”

Jesus says, simply, “Just take my hand. I will walk with you. One step at a time. Your burden is now mine.” The old things have gone away. Look, new things have arrived!

“Come to me, all you who are struggling hard and carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Put on my yoke, and learn from me. I’m gentle and humble. And you will find rest for yourselves.”

Matthew 11:28-29

Peterson’s phrasing in The Message really resonates: “Get away with me and you’ll recover your life.” “Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.” “Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”

February 1. An opportunity to stand in the freedom of Jesus and walk in the unforced rhythms of grace. I’ll take any amount of that! – DEREK


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