Responding to SufferingHow do you feel when your life is interrupted by suffering and adversity?
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By Lindsay Williams, inspired by Newsboys
I was finished...game over/ Couldn’t carry the weight on my shoulders/ At my end...in trouble/ Knocked down on the ground...seein’ double
Sometimes you just want to level it all and start again. Blow it up and rebuild. We’ve all been there. Left standing alone in the smoke and ash of failed plans, extinguished dreams and unplanned circumstances. Sometimes ignited by our own choices, and other times sparked by the wrongs of others. Either way, once the dust settles and feelings of disillusionment and loss close in, threatening to smother our existence, we’re faced with an important choice: to give up or to move forward.
If only life had a reset button.
How differently we would live our lives if we could learn from our mistakes, ask for forgiveness and rewind a particular conversation, a certain event or a specific day for a chance to right a wrong. While we can’t go back, God does give us an infinite amount of grace-soaked “do overs.” Sometimes He even hits the button for us, knowing our priorities need to shift. It’s His way of getting us back on track, back to the core of who He created us to be. He doesn’t just desire to fix us, He wants to make us completely new.
Revelation 21:4-6 (NIV) says this: “He who was seated on the throne said, ‘I am making everything new!’ Then he said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’”
Not only is God in the business of second chances, but His promises are trustworthy and true. Behold, He is making all things new—you, me and everything in between. When we are blinded by our sin and shame, God sees the beautiful life He created when He formed each of us. He longs to restore, rebuild and refocus our lives. Isaiah relays it best: “See I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland” (Isaiah 43:18-20, NIV).
Every sunrise is an opportunity to start over. God desires for us to leave our past behind and move ahead toward restoration. Every step forward is one step closer to Him. And every do over is a chance to be shaped into His likeness. Just when we think the game is over, He hits the restart button and nudges us back into the game.
You hit the restart/ You make all things new/ That’s just what You do
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