September 27, 2013
When God Does a New Thing
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Friend to Friend
I admit, I’m a sucker for the makeover shows. It doesn’t matter what kind… home makeovers, fashion makeovers… or even the shows that take a person from drab or flab to fab. I just love to see an amazing transformation! Don’t you?
Last summer we “transformed” our family a bit when we added a bouncy little puppy to the mix. Fun, right? Mostly, yes, but there is a bit more to the story…
Let’s just say that it took a good while for our precious new addition to get the hang of potty training and healthy chewing patterns. Our little, little dog caused us big, big problems when he chewed up and stained our family room carpet.
It. Looked. Awful.
Eventually, when he grew into his bladder and better doggy habits, I was ready for a makeover of a carpet-kind in my munched-on, stained-up family room. So we went to the home improvement store, ordered new carpet and waited with excitement for installation day.
When the day finally came around, I watched the installers painstakingly remove the old flooring layer by layer. First they pulled back and removed the stained, chewed up carpet. Then they tore out the worn down old pad and put all the nasty, soiled carpet and padding in their van to take to the dump.
Next they cleared away the remaining debris – cleaned the entire area – and installed the fresh flooring. A fluffy new foundation of padding and carpet! Hallelujah! It was a beautiful transformation!
God is all about beautiful transformations. He is an active, deeply personal, infinitely caring God who restores us on a heart level with a makeover of a masterful kind. When we turn to Him in repentance, He takes the broken, stained areas of our lives away and replaces our mess with a beauty that is far beyond ourselves – the beauty of Christ.
The Bible has a great deal to say about what happens when we turn to God:
“Those who look to him are radiant; they are never covered in shame.” Psalm 34:5
“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:18-19
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” 2 Corinthians 5:17
Listen, friend, I am living proof of the scandalous nature of God’s grace… of His willingness to forgive and restore ugly, tattered heart places. I don’t write from a platform of perfection, but from a foundation of grace that was finished and established by the blood of Jesus Christ.
He came so that you and I could live beyond our pasts – beyond our disappointments – beyond our biggest mistakes and our deepest pains. He came so we could be forgiven and made new. So we could have abundant life.
I don’t know where this finds you right now, but God surely does. He knows and sees everything – and still His love remains.
We all have brokenness that needs fixingand stains that need to be cleaned. We all need a makeover! The good news of the Gospel is simple: when we call out to God and seek His heart and forgiveness through Jesus Christ, He does a new thing! He meets us with mercy, forgives us completely, blesses us with grace and does a masterful, life-changing work of transformation.
Dear Lord, I’m so grateful that You love makeovers as much as I do! You know my heart and You know my messes, failures and wounds. Please create a clean heart in me today, Lord. Would You do a new and beautiful thing? In Jesus’s Name I pray, Amen.
Now it’s Your Turn
Are you ready to move forward in God’s fresh grace today? Click over to my blog ormy Facebook page and leave a comment that says, “I’m ready for a new thing!” While you’re there, check out the photo of my precious problematic puppy and take a moment to listen to the song Broken into Beautiful.
Is there someone you know who needs to read this message? Forward this email. Post it on your social media sites. Share the hope of healing.
More from the Girlfriends
My full testimony is featured the book, Broken into Beautiful, along with Scriptural truths and stories of how God has brought restoration the hearts of many other women who had painful life wounds. Experience God’s healing and hope in your life today as you read Broken Into Beautiful! To order the book, go to Amazon or, for a signed copy, visit my website.
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September 26, 2013
“And yet I will show you the most excellent way. If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.” (1 Corinthians 12:31 – 13:1 NIV)
Each morning, I have a routine with my husband. It’s simple. Nothing profound. Nothing for which we’d ever stop and snap a picture.
It’s just a moment.
He asks me to help him pick a tie. He then goes away to fuss with this fixture of his professional job. Soon, he returns with a flipped up collar and a pressed down, knotted tie. He needs gentle hands to fold the collar over. Actually, he doesn’t need. He wants gentle hands to fold the collar over.
And I do.
It’s just a moment.
But it’s a moment when we follow the “excellent way” of love. In the intersection of this moment, we’re once again saying to each other: I love you; I love you too.
Now, please don’t get an overly idyllic picture in your head of our marriage. Heavens, no. We have plenty of those “growth opportunity” moments too.
But this moment with the tie, it’s like a spot of glue ever tightening the bond between us day by day. It’s so simple, and yet something I would miss with the deepest ache imaginable if today were the last of the moments.
Tears slip as I think about this. Dear God, help me think about this. Let me snap a hundred of these moments with the lens of my heart to be stored and appreciated and thought of as the great treasure they are.
Let my mind park there.
Let my heart relish there.
Let my mouth dare to whisper what a joy this is. I love you. I love us. I love this moment each day.
Our relationship isn’t perfect; no relationship is perfect. We’re two very strong-willed people with vastly different approaches to life. And, oh, how easy it would be to list all the differences. He likes the towel hanging in the same spot. I am more creative. But I stop the list there.
I stop because great love isn’t two people finding the perfect match in one another. Great love is two people making the choice to be a match. A decision. To fold his collar and snap the heart lens and find myself grateful to the point of tears. Tears of relishing today are so much better than tears of what was missed.
It’s just a moment.
Or is it?
Dear Lord, help me to appreciate each moment given to me. I want to park my mind on the daily moments I too often take for granted. Thank You for this joy, so simple but so sweet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
This devotion is pulled directly from our brand new book:Encouragement for Today: Devotions for Everyday Living. One of our readers, Miranda, said, “I used to feel hopeless and like my life didn’t matter. Through Encouragement for Today, I feel equipped to be a godly wife and mom, and like I have a purpose.”
Our heart is to equip you too, through the 100 daily devotions written by woman on our team from every walk of life. Purchase your copy by clicking here.
Visit Lysa TerKeurst’s blog for more encouragement.
Let me snap a hundred “I love you” moments with the lens of my heart to be stored and appreciated and thought of as the great treasure they are.
In what ways can you turn everyday moments into treasures? It may be as simple as relishing a moment in your heart or it may mean beginning a new moment every day, such as folding a collar over a necktie.
Discuss your “moments” with your spouse, your family, or a friend. Ask what stands out to them as important and meaningful and choose together to relish them. Take a photograph or journal about one moment.
1 Peter 4:8; Psalm 90:12
Taken from Encouragement for Today: Devotions for Everyday Living by Renee Swope, Lysa TerKeurst and Samantha Evilsizer. © 2013 Proverbs 31 Ministries. Used by permission of Zondervan. http://www.zondervan.com.