Thursday, December 31, 2009


Tomorrow is the first day of 2010, what we so affectionately refer to as the New Year. People often take this opportunity to start fresh and resolve to be different in the new year. In fact, I was planning on making my New Year's Resolution list right here. It would include the same old things that I resolved to change last year but never did. I would be sincere in these resolutions, wanting to change, but not having it come to fruition the rest of the year. That seems to be the trend with a lot of people. (I'm not knocking New Year's Resolutions, I'm just saying that that's not what I'm talking about on this post. No, the irony does not escape me.)

Instead, I decided to write about the first word of the holiday. New. It's an interesting word. You hear about products that are "New & Improved," which doesn't make sense when you think about it. Making an improvement doesn't make something new; it makes it improved. If I cleaned my room (which is one of my resolutions), I wouldn't say that it's new. If I moved into a house that nobody had ever lived in before and hauled all my junk to a room that no one had ever slept in before, that would be new. For a while.

I think a lot of times I settle for the improved rather than the new. Because that's what I expect. If the dishes are dirty, my thought isn't to buy new ones, but to wash the ones I've used. Improve their current state.

But God doesn't want us to settle for improved. He wants to make us new. I may want to read, "If anyone is in Christ, he is an improved being. The old has been tucked away; behold the improved has been surfaced." That's not what God had Paul write in 2 Corinthians 5:17. He said that anyone in Christ is a "new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come." He doesn't just change us until we're better; He makes us new. The old self is gone.

It was about 8 years ago when Christ came into my life to make me new. Sometimes I feel like that new has worn off. Like I got nicked and scratched and banged up until I look like that old 1986 model again. Even if I feel that way, I know Christ doesn't see me like that. That old me is gone, and He doesn't see it, because it's not there.

Lord, I thank You that you didn't come to improve me, but to make me new, so the old me that was Your enemy is dead and gone, crucified and buried, never to return again.