Thursday, June 26, 2008

Tye-Dying to Self

I was talking to my best friend about failure. Specifically, her failure. Well, something she felt was a failure. She is very hard on herself and was frustrated over something that she felt she should not be struggling with anymore. She felt that she should be different. She was feeling that because of things God is teaching her, she should have her emotions more under control.

But it struck me, or rather, God spoke to me, that her frustration was coming from a misunderstanding of putting off our old self, dying to self.

"For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin" Romans 6:6

"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;" Ephesians 4:22

I believe that God, through the sacrifice of His Son, has made me new. But it's a new me. He's not making me like the woman down the street, or the woman who sits a few rows ahead of me in church. I'm me. He knit me together, He wants to make me new, not make me someone else.

There are things about us, that make us, well, us and I don't believe God intends to change that. My friend's heart will always be located on her sleeve, and her heart will always form thoughts more quickly than her brain. Of course, there are also things about us that are sin, and God definitely intends to change that!

"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!" 2 Corinthians 5:17

So, here is the image I got of what it would look like to be a new creation. I pictured myself as an old white t-shirt. God has no desire to throw out the old t-shirt and buy a different one. He wants to make that old white t-shirt new. So, I surrender to His will and each twist and tie, and He adds color that I didn't have. And then the waiting, the rinsing the cleaning, washing, drying. A new creation is revealed as the ties are unwound. The old has gone, the new has come!

Thank you, God for taking the time to make me new. For not just writing me off.

God has made us each special. Unique. And yet all in His image. He made us with differences so that we can function as a body. Each one doing it's part. We shouldn't strive to be like anyone except Jesus.