That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying,
our spirits are being renewed every day.
- 2 Corinthians 4:16 NLT
As God has brought us into another new year, we are to trade in the old for the new. God’s “new” will always be the best for you. When I hear the word new, I think of the word renewal. As above in 2 Corinthians 4:16, it talks about not giving up, even though our bodies are dying (even though we feel buried, as if we are wasting away, weak, or without purpose), our spirits (inner selves) are being RENEWED, oh yeah and don’t forget that it says EVERY DAY. I like the way the Amplified version puts it,
Therefore we do not become discouraged [spiritless, disappointed, or afraid].
Though our outer self is [progressively] wasting away, yet our inner self is being [progressively] renewed day by day. - 2 Corinthians 4:16 AMP
Yes last year might have discouraged us, left us disappointed or afraid, but this year we are going to see RENEWAL. It might not be an overnight thing but we will progressively be renewed day by day. I know I didn’t make perfect decisions last year, and maybe you can relate; we didn’t allow God to renew us. I like to think of it as spiritual hygiene, we have to refresh ourselves. If we don’t “shower” ourselves with the Word of God we might “stink” of the things of this world. If we don’t brush our teeth spiritually with the Word, we will begin to speak foul or negative things into our lives and those around us. If we don’t lather our heads with the “shampoo” called grace, our heads will begin to tell us we're not worthy of His love. We have to have good spiritual hygiene this year to feel refreshed and to feel renewed. We can’t just be renewed once every so often, it should be a daily thing. We all know how it feels after a long sweaty day to hop in the shower and take a nice extra long, very much needed shower; it’s super refreshing. That’s how we should feel when getting into the presence of God, renewing our mind daily.
You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
- Ephesians 4:22-24 NIV
Likewise with renewing and putting off our old selves, we can’t ride off of the spiritual high we got at youth camp last year (or 7 years ago, if you’re like me) or the revival we felt at that conference a couple years ago, or even that worship night from a few days ago. Don’t hold on to the old, allow God to bring the “new” into your new year. This year, we are trading in the old mindset for a new mindset; trading in the old, negative perspective or a new one. Do your part, as in throwing away the old and welcoming the new, changing your mindset and perspective. I understand it won’t be as easy as it is to say it but here are a few verses that will help you:
Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. - Romans 12:2 ESV
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. - Lamentations 3:22-23 NIV
But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
- Isaiah 40:31 ESV
Those verse helped in my current situation this year. Because to be honest, it was hard for me to say God’s “new” will always be best for you. This 2019 “road trip” already started out bumpy; my car stopped working. Now how do you expect to go on a road trip without a car? You start to doubt all the good things God has in store for you when it’s already not “going as planned.” I had to call someone to possibly jumpstart my car, and I’ve had to ask for help for rides from a few friends and family. As I was talking to one of my friends, they told me to trust in God that whatever He’s allowing is to draw me closer to Him. They also said that God’s new doesn’t always mean new car for this 2019 “road trip.” But it may be that my current car breaking down will require me to call on someone every so many miles (not only referring to in the natural but to God in the spiritual). I had to trade in my old perspective for a new one; I have to change my negative drained mindset for a new godly mindset. I also had to trade in my old drained battery for a new, fully charged one. God presents us with a new opportunity every breath we take to view/do things differently. God’s new will always be best for you.
For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord,
plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
- Jeremiah 29:11
1. What is at least one old thing from last year that you need to trade for new? (Habits, relationship, friends, certain mindset or perspective)
2. What in your life could use a spiritual shower that needs to be refreshed/renewed? (Attitude, gossip, faith walk, trust)
Father God, I want to thank You for always having the best in store for me. Help me to renew my mind daily, help me to refresh my perspective and change my mindset to the way you see things. Give me the strength to put off the old things and like Colossians 3:10 says, “And have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.” I want to be more like You, Lord. Give me strength for this 2019 road trip to express my love for You through my life. Thank You for the exchange You made. You made the ultimate trade with no guarantee of anything in return. I pray that this year I will be able to trade my old self and put on the mind of Christ by getting into the Word more. I will seek you more this year.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
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