Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
2 Corinthians 5:17
When I decided to move to my hometown, there were a couple friends that couldn’t believe what I was doing. They were blown away by the fact that I would even want to go back, let alone survive in the small town atmosphere again.
My life in my new city, before Christ drew me back into his arms again, was completely – and I mean completely – different than it is now. I don’t even know how to start in describing how different I was. I was crass, I was rough, I was scattered, I was busy. I swore like a trucker. I drank like a fish. The jokes and comments that came out of my mouth were obscene.
And I slept with men that weren’t my husband.
This is the part that blows me away the most.
This is how effective spiritual blindness is. I can’t even believe that I slept in the same bed as another man other than the man I committed to in marriage, let alone how I got naked with them. I can’t understand how I found the nerve to take my clothes off in front of them.
I had become a person that I am now ashamed to admit that I was, but at the time I was almost proud of what I had become.
So when God reached down and took those scales from my eyes, the change was drastic. It was sudden and drastic and it was noticeable. When you accept Christ into your life, whether it’s for the first time, or again, he makes you a new creation. Your old self falls away and he washes over you with such strength that your new self can’t be recognized. In an instant I was made new. My swearing wasn’t acceptable to me any longer, my jokes were disgusting, excessive drinking wasn’t something I wanted to participate in. Even the music I listened to had to change, I couldn’t handle secular music with sexual implications (or outright details) and swearing. The movies I watched suddenly convicted me…everything changed.
Let’s pretend for a moment that my husband had read the email I sent him and it had crossed his mind to take me back. It’s no wonder he didn’t. For him to trust that such a big change in me was real and permanent, not a show or a surface change, would have taken a huge leap of faith. The change that God made in me was a miracle. Even I didn’t think it would ever be possible. If I had seen this change in someone else, I would have been extremely skeptical. The words that would have run through my head would have been “Right, well we’ll see how long this lasts!”
All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation.
2 Corinthians 5:18
All this IS from God! Only he could have made this change! Only he could have transformed me! There is no other way this change could have been so complete!
Especially in my circumstances, isn’t it interesting that this verse comes next? After God transformed me, made me a new creation, he gave me a ministry of reconciliation.
God not only transformed me, he gave me a ministry. He transformed me because he wants me to be reconciled to him. But he also wants me to be reconciled to my husband. And while I wait for this to happen he has given me a passion for the reconciliation of others and their relationships with their spouses and with God.
It’s as if this verse was written exactly for me.
Ok, yes, God has made me a new creation.
Yep, ok, he’s also given me a ministry of reconciliation.
…That God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.
2 Corinthians 5:19
Thank God my sins are not being held against me! I have been made a new creation in him and in that, all of my sins, my words, my actions, my rebellious and disgusting thoughts, have been washed away. I am a new creation inside and out. Thank. You. GOD!
Thank goodness the old Katie is gone! I don’t want to be that girl anymore. I wish I could go back in time and erase my actions, but in a way it’s even better that I’ve learned that, regardless of anything that I have done…my savior, has washed me clean, as if my sins have never happened. This way I can see the power of my God. I can feel the entirety of his amazing grace. I can realize how undeserving I really am, but know that it doesn’t matter. That he still loves me. Regardless of anything I’ve done.
I was stained black with the sins I committed but yet my God keeps no record of wrongs. I am white as snow because of him. I am a completely new person. I’m not even the old Katie, I’m a brand new one. I don’t even want to go back to who I was before I left my marriage, I am a new creation completely.
When I left the city I was living in to come back to my hometown, my roommate wrote me a letter. She insulted who I had become and bashed my new character. I wasn’t even trying to be a new person, I just was! I could have been hurt, I could have been angry and insulted. But I was amazed! In the short time that we had been living together since God made this change in me, she had already seen a new me! She had seen it so clearly that she felt like she needed to defend herself, even though I hadn’t come against her in any way. God had done such a huge change in me that it was very obvious to her! That showed me how big of a change had really taken place.
Amazing. God’s work is efficient and precise. When he is allowed to work, he works furiously. When God has a mission, he completes it!
I am so thankful that God made me a new creation in him! Completely amazed at the entirety of the change and so grateful for the chance to live in him again.
We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: be reconciled to God.
2 Corinthians 5:20
Being reconciled with God is a hard step.
I would know, I pushed it off for two years. I knew what I had to do, I heard his voice asking me to read his word and I knew what doing it would mean. But what I didn’t know what the freedom I would feel by obeying him. I was blinded; I couldn’t see how doing that one simple task – reading his word and taking a step of obedience – would make me feel whole again. I didn’t realize it would make me feel like I had come home, finally.
If you are running. Stop. If you are avoiding. Stop. If you are denying. Stop.
Reconcile yourself with God, listen to his voice, don’t put it off any longer.
All God cares about is that you are home. You are back where you belong, in his arms. He longs to hear your voice, just start talking.
I can imagine this is how it will be when my husband and I are reunited. I won’t care about the explanations. I’ll just be so glad to feel him in my arms again. I’ll just be so grateful to hear the sound of his voice…