June 1 should be the first day of summer. September 1 should be the first day of fall. December 1 should be the first day of winter.
Which means that March 1 should be the first day of spring. So I have been pretending that it is. I have switched out my black, winter handbag for my hot pink purse. I have begun to use self-tanner instead of moisturizer. And I was this-close to changing out my boots in the coat closet to all my cute flats, but we just got a truckload of snow dumped on us out here in Illinois, so I’m sticking with the boots for a few more days. But in my mind, it’s totally spring. Because I am desperate for some spring…literally and metaphorically. Which has gotten me thinking about new things.
I don’t know what your life looks like right now, but if you’re a regular reader of my blog, you’re more than likely either in a difficult marriage or going through a divorce (or you’re related to me or one of my best friends and are just totally sweet to keep reading these depressing posts of mine!), and so if you are in a hard marriage or slogging through a hard divorce, the last thing you are thinking about, probably, are new things.
But new things can come to us even in the middle of whatever our hard looks like today.
For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland. –Isaiah 43:19- (NLT)
Do you see what God is saying in this verse? He is saying that he sees us in our wilderness – in other words, he knows what we’re going through in our difficult marriages and in our painful divorces or whatever else life has thrown at us – and he is creating streams to coarse through what appears to us as desert, as a wasteland.
I’ve had a bunch of new things happen to me lately. I started attending a new church that I absolutely love, which has totally blown me away after leaving behind my sweet church home of nineteen years. I met with my new pastor for a great conversation and he showed me so much grace I almost couldn’t handle it. My daughter has decided to go on a mission trip this summer and I’m having to let her go in a new way. My book is coming out in the fall and I worked with a new editor who was simply amazing. New, new, new. In the middle of my hard, hard, hard. And God can do that for you too.
So I want to give you a few questions to sit with…
1) What is one old thing that you know God wants to work on in you and get rid of?
2) If you could have any new thing happen in your life (dream big), what would it be and why?
3) What is one new prayer you can start praying? (Examples: that God would replace your heart of bitterness with a heart of flesh, or that you would fall completely in love with God in new ways, etc.)
4) What is one new thing you can start doing? (Examples: plan to lay down for ten minutes as soon as you get home from work every day for a week just to see if it helps you enjoy your evening more, or switch counselors because the old one has been giving you the same non-working advice for ten years, etc.)
If we want our lives to look differently tomorrow than they look today, we’re going to have to start doing things differently. God wants to bring new things into your life – even in the middle of your hard, messy little world. So ask him. Ask him to do something new in your heart and in your life today. And then wait with expectation.
The faithful love of the Lord never ends!His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. –Lamentations 3:32-33- (NLT)