“Then Jesus gave them this illustration: No one tears a piece of cloth from a new garment and uses it to patch an old garment. For then the new garment would be torn, and the patch wouldn’t even match the old garment. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. The new wine would burst the old skins, spilling the wine and ruining the skins. New wine must be put into new wineskins. But no one who drinks the old wine seems to want the fresh and the new. `The old is better,’ they say.” (Luke 5:36-39, New Living Translation)
Have you ever wanted change, without wanting to change? This sounds a little wacky, but I am sure you know what I mean. For instance, let’s say you are tired of your normal hairstyle. You’ve been wearing it that way for years and you wonder if a new haircut would be better. So you decide to do it. You arrive at the hair salon only to experience strange sensations coming from the pit of your stomach–anxiety, nervousness, panic…”Oh no,” you think as you catch a glimpse of your long locks in the mirror, “I like my hair just the way it is. Why in the world am I here?”
Remember, you are here because you wanted something new.
You can apply this simple statement to every crossroad in your life. Whether you’re wanting to start a new business, look for a new job, move to a new home or make a new friend, you will probably experience some apprehension. After all, you are comfortable with the old and familiar and you don’t know for sure what change will bring. If fear of change has its grips on you, focus on this…
Every time God does something new, it is to make something better.
In the parable above, Jesus was referring to the Old Covenant (old wine) in which mankind was made righteous with God by obeying the Law. He wanted them to know that they shouldn’t try to make the New Covenant (new wine) of salvation by grace (not works) fit into their old way of doing things…traditions, rituals, ceremonies, et cetera. Jesus knew that even though the New Covenant was an improvement, people would think the old way was better. This brings us to an important question. Why are we afraid of something new?
I believe it’s simply this–the new is unknown and forces us to really trust God. The new requires a leap of faith.
As we begin to make changes in our lives, we will have some unanswered questions like: “What if I don’t like this new hair cut and I can’t grow it back?” What if I don’t like this new job and I can’t get another one? What if I don’t like this new neighborhood and can’t make any friends? But if we really get honest, we would admit that everything we have accomplished in the past was only done by the grace of God. So why worry now? God’s grace (special empowerment and mercy) is not just for our past–it’s for our future too! God will help us with every new thing He brings into our lives. Just know this…
If God is doing something new in your life, take comfort. This change is for your good.
“I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out–plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.” (Jeremiah 29:11, The Message)
Today’s Life Key: Change is for your good.