Monday, January 4, 2016

All Things New


"Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." - 2 Corinthians 5:17
The new year is a time of reflection, but also a time of growth and change. We often start the year with great goals and aspirations, but somewhere by the middle of January, we've fallen into the same goal trap as before - The Comfort Zone. Before you know it, you're back to doing the same things that you were doing the year before - nothing.
Comfort will get you nothing except for unfulfilled dreams. (tweet)
So, you want to find that dream job, or start a business (like myself), or become more spiritually focused and responsible. These are all great things that can be accomplished, but what are you doing to reach these goals, now? What changes do you need to make in order for your dreams to be reached.  Whether it's something you need to start or stop doing, change has to occur. The only thing that can hold you back is allowing the fear of failure to override the wonders that come with striving for what you believe in.

If I must be honest with you, I often find myself in the Comfort Zone. We think that comforts equals good, safety, and security because, at least we're familiar with it, but what do we do when that comfort is stripped from us unexpectedly?

 A loss of a job.

A  loss of spouse.

A loss of emotional stability.

Fear quickly sets in, and you're left confused.

Although we've been made new in Christ, many Christians still live their lives in complete fear of the unknown. Sometimes the fear is understandable, but most often fear is unwarranted and a wast of our time and energy. If we truly believe what 2 Corinthians 5:17 states, "old things have passed away, and all things have become new," then we need to move from fear to faith and embrace the changes that God wants to make in us. 

Some practical and much needed steps in moving from fear to faith and getting beyond the Comfort Zone are:
  1. Embrace your identity in Christ: When Jesus saved us, He didn't just clean us of our sins - He redeemed us, reclaiming us as His own. Not only are we new creations in Christ, we've been called:
    • Chosen by God (Ephesians 1:11)
    • Saints (Ephesians 1:1)
    • Valuable to God (Matthew 6:26)
    • God's masterpiece (Ephesians 2:10)
      I could have added more than this. Acknowledging our identity in Christ AND actually living in this truth gives us the boldness not only to serve God, but to serve others through whatever means we can.
  2. Become a better biblical steward: Biblical stewardship completely changes our perspective on the management of our time, money and every part of our lives. Got Questions states, "Faithful stewardship means that we fully acknowledge we are not our own but belong to Christ, the Lord, who gave Himself for us" (GotQuestions.org). Are you truly managing what God has given us in a way that brings Him glory and advances good for others? Are you truly willing to allow God to work in you dramatically?
  3. Be bold enough to move when God speaks
What has God called you to do and live out this year? Whether it be to write more, spend more time reading your Bible, or to be a better spouse and have healthier relationships with others, God can and will give us the strength to do these things.

So, what are you waiting for? It's time to move out of The Comfort Zone, because all things are new.

Suggested Reads:
  • Becoming Spiritually Beautiful by Sharon Jaynes
  • Do More Better by Tim Challies
  • (A business related read) People Over Profit by Dale Partridge

SDG