In my writing app, I keep an “Ideas” list.
It’s a whole separate folder with half-started documents, one sentence descriptions, or even just titles for things that I thought at one point were a good idea to write about.
It’s sort of like an eventual to-do list. Whenever I struggle to come up with something to write about, I can go look at this list and pick something that sticks out to me and move it forward.
The problem with this list is that for a lot of these topics, the “muse” has left the building. I had an idea and was excited about it at one time so I wrote it down. Over time though, these ideas have lost their glittery shine and they don’t stand out as much as they used to. I really have to dig to find one that has a sparkle anymore. That doesn’t mean that they won’t ever shine again. It just means that I have to take them out and clean them up a little before I can remember them for the beauty that they were when I created them.
Something old can be beautiful again. Just because it’s covered in dirt and a little worn down doesn’t mean that it can’t be restored to it’s former glory.
I love shows like Fixer Upper for just this reason. Obviously Chip & Joanna are ridiculously talented, and that helps a ton. But they are known for taking something that no one else would look at and turn it into something that everyone wants to look at. They are fantastic at taking something old that has been neglected and worn down by time and restoring it to it’s former glory. They are great at taking an old piece and displaying it in a way that allows others to see the beauty it still possesses.
And so too it is with God.
God is the master at taking old things and making them new.
During my sophomore year of college, I had a couple of friends (one who would eventually become my wife) who, on purpose, started talking about Jesus around me. Eventually, the whole Christianity idea had peaked my interest so I began to explore it myself. Over time I began to see my need for a relationship with Jesus in my life. Then on March 22, 1994 I gave my life to Jesus in my dorm room. All by myself in the middle of the night. Just like any good introvert would do. 😄
(Side note: That paragraph just reminded me of the 3 steps in relationship that Donald Miller talks about in his book Marketing Made Simple. There’s curiosity, then enlightenment, and finally commitment. Haha, my friends, without even knowing it, were using a sales funnel on me. That’s hysterical.)
God took me, a 20-year-old kid with a decent amount of baggage and changed me that day. He took the “old me” and turned it into a “new me”.
Stop. Scripture Time.
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation; old things have passed away, and look, new things have come.
– 2 Corinthians 5:17
When we become Christians, God takes the old us and makes a new us. The old me becomes a new me. The old you becomes a new you.
As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions — it is by grace you have been saved.
Worse than just being an “old me”, I was a “dead me”. I had no hope and no future. Jesus came along and not only made me a “new me”, he made me an “alive me”. I was a dead man made alive through Jesus. He gave me a hope and a future.
He can do the same for you.
I might be able to take dying and dead ideas and give them new life through writing. The Gaines’ for sure can take dying and dead things like homes and give them new life through restoration. But only Jesus can take dead people and literally breathe new life into their lungs, making them alive again.
He can take and old me and turn it into a new me. He can take a dead me and make me alive again.
He can do the same for you.
Just ask Him. “Jesus I believe you are who you say you are and did what you say you did. Make me new. I want to live again.”
You feel that? That’s new, fresh breath in your lungs. That’s you becoming a new creation. Just like that.