Friday, December 28, 2007

All Things New

I've posted before about the prep work I've been engaged in for a class I will be teaching starting in January. Frankly, the work has had a major impact on my heart. I've found myself thinking many, many times "Pat, what gospel have you actually been living out the last few years of your life." That question alone provides great insight into where I've been in my heart. I believe I've been a lone wolf when it comes to my understanding of what God wants to do to me. In other words, I felt as though God left me alone for a bit to fend for myself, to teach me more. Oh boy, was I dead wrong!! He never left my side. Proof? I've been given some great gifts in the way of repentance and forgiveness, for the purpose of stripping away yet more deep sinful attitudes I've held on to, toward life in general and God himself.

These last few years have been an internal battle, with the last year or so showing external signs of the struggle. I write this post today because I have been humbled and I just want to express my deep (grace produced) gratefulness for the work of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Unlike 2006 and 2007, I am looking forward to 2008 - for what God has in store for our lives! May you know him more!

I found the following poem at Shepard Press and it seems to speak to my anticipation for God-glorifying times in 2008:

God's Resolution (for any year)

New Year.
New toys.
New gadgets to play with.
New things to do.
New things to tantalize.
But what happens to the old?
Thrown away, trashed, burned.
"But it's broken, worn out, used up; it''s old!"

And into this world that prizes new things,
which has junk heaps for mountains,
come the words from the One who sits on the throne:
"Behold, I am making all things new."

And that's what he does, doesn’t he?

He takes old things - like you and me,

things that are broken with sin,

things that are used in the ways of selfishness,

things that are tired because of vain pursuits...

And instead of holding us at arm's length

with disdain - over the trash can - saying:
"It's's old!"

He says, "Behold, I am making all things new."

And then He does it.
He takes on body to experience getting older.
He endures the older-than-time taunts of the one
who delights in destroying, in tearing apart.
He knows the age-old temptations to sin.
He hangs on old wood.
Why this throne-leaving to intimately know "old"?
So He can take old hearts and transform them.
So He can make old, sad hearts dance with new joy.
So He can make guilty hearts
know newness of starting over again.
So He can make all of us old sinners
(well practiced in old paths of sin)
know new life.
So He can make all things new.

©Kelly Knowlden


Carla Stream said...

Love you, Patrick!

Coffeegirl said...

I'm going to read this many, many times. Thanks so much for the encouragement, Pat. It is so so so amazing to hear your heart and see God at work. This tired broken old soul needed that reminder. It's all for Him, the good, the bad and nasty. Thank goodness he doesn't toss us out.

Reegz said...

Good post Pat. Happy New Year!