Spring is here and I’m getting ready for my annual countdown…..the countdown until Winter begins again!
Thanks to Google, I know that, as of the day I wrote this, we have 270 days until Winter begins. I've written before about my love of winter and why it's so special to me. Spring is a different story, or at least it was. was never on my radar. Autumn was always my favorite, followed closely by Winter and Spring was just,
The Spring season was never on my radar. Autumn was always my favorite, followed closely by Winter. Spring was just, well, when the bugs started coming out. As I’ve matured, in years and spirit, I have come to embrace the beauty and symbolism Spring brings us. We are fortunate in Pennsylvania because we get to see every season in it’s fullest from 90-degree days to 34-inches of snow and everything in between. Springs’s beauty is no exception.
Spring is about new life. In nature, babies are being born and in gardens flowers are beginning to grow (or around here, weeds are beginning to grow). The Earth seems to come alive. Spiritually, Spring is a reminder to us, of the new life, found in Jesus. This is probably nothing new to most of you. Jesus = new life. But are we really walking in the new life? Do we fully embrace and understand that we are no longer who we were before? Our past does not define us any longer. 2 Corinthians tells us clearly in chapter 5, verse 17:
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual condition] have passed away. Behold, new things have come [because spiritual awakening brings a new life]. (AMP)
Think of the flowers we eagerly await this time of year. Whether annual or perennial, each year the flower is new. The bulb may be the same but the growth and beautiful blooms are new each year. And with annual flowers, that old dry seed is hard to find once germination and growth begin. A dirty, boring bulb, a dry, lifeless seed – both are made new and vibrant with water, sun and soil.
What about you? Do you understand the fullness of the new life you have in Christ? You aren’t defined by the dry, dirty or lifeless past you experienced. You are new because Christ died. The ultimate expression of new life this time of year is, of course, the Resurrection of Christ. Jesus’ death and resurrection are the cornerstones of the Christian faith. He died for us. Really let that sink in. The God of the universe sent his Son to die for us and the Son died willingly. For you – angry, tired, worn out, short-tempered, frustrated, weary you! And for you – beat up, broken, ashamed, scared and lonely you!
What does embracing this new life look like? Here are three steps you must take:
#1 – Let Go of Regrets
Regret will only hold you in your bondage. Like unforgiveness, regrets only hurt you and serve as a way to keep you down. You do not need regret when you have repentance. Repentance says, “I messed up, I'm sorry Lord, help me.” Regret says, “I was a fool and I'll always be one.”
Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. ~ Isiah 43: 18-19
#2 Accept Your Past
You can’t change what happened to you, what you did, where you were, what you said or how you were raised. But you can accept it and surrender it to God. Accepting the reality of your past life does not make your actions or the actions of other acceptable but it frees you to move forward. This acceptance allows the Holy Spirit to begin to heal you.
#3 Look For 2nd Chances
We need to look for opportunities that come our way. Naomi was bitter at the loss of her husband and sons. But she didn’t stay there. She took action to find a home for Ruth, her daughter in law. She looked for a second chance.
Our second chances aren’t always about us but about those who can benefit from our mess. Mess to message. I can’t change my past but I am using it to see other women live thriving lives. Your struggle and your past is not so unique that it lacks purpose. What you’ve been through can be a second chance for someone else when you open up and share your story.
God calls each one of us out of our past like he calls new life up from the soil each Spring. We are made new like the bulb and the seed and like them too, we can grow in the Son (with an O) with Water from the Word and warmth of the Father’s love.
Jesus, we just love you so much. We thank you that we can let go of our past. Oh, the sweet freedom that comes from letting go of last year, last week, last month or the last hour. Holy Spirit I ask you to come now and fill each the woman reading this with the reality of how new and beautiful she is. Lord thank you for the reminder of Spring and how you have given us new life. Let each bloom and animal baby we see be a reminder of that new life and let us remember the ultimate renewal we have thanks to Christ. In Jesus’ Name, Amen