Throughout the decades, I have on too many occasions been overwhelmed by the desire to either start new or to be made new. This desire may appear as a noble cause. Starting fresh is certainly a wonderful notion, the proverbial clean slate. Most of the time, however, these yearnings for newness only overtake us after a blunder or when we assume we have missed the mark.
The longing for newness occurs when life falls apart or when we feel we’re not enough. During these times, we lust after a new us, someone who will be accepted, loved, welcomed, and maybe even prized. The fact is, we have all felt like not enough. We have also all begged for a day to end, hoping and praying that the following day would bring different circumstances…a day made new.
For some, this yearning would be a day without pain, for others a day without grief. For yet others, it would be a day when they feel whole, or pretty, or smart, or wanted. We appear to be Earth’s sole inhabitants who worry about tomorrow or exalt a day already long gone. Or, who yearn for events, things, or people to be different, reformed, so to speak—most often to our ways, of course.
Yes, the “what ifs,” or the “if onlys,” or yet again, the “if ____ , then I _____.” All abracadabras or incantations which will render life suddenly—and magically—different, better for certain. Wishful pies in the sky which will make today more bearable, or more fun, or just plain better in some small or extravagant way. Certainly, something—anything—which will make today other than what today is.
Likewise, we wish for the magic wand which will transform us with the expectation that this newness will bring forth the desires of our heart for love, money, recognition, etc. We humans spend too many of our very finite years longing, a habit which amounts only to the wasting of one’s non-renewable commodity: our life.
The truth is life IS. You ARE.
As a tiger cannot change its stripes, neither can you be other than who you are right now. Likewise, neither can this day, this moment, be other than what it is.
This is not to say we shouldn’t aspire to be either refined or improved. These are worthy sentiments and most certainly worthy goals, nor should we never hope for a dreadful day to come to a merciful end.
We can only be human after all.
Nevertheless, when we learn to accept what is as what is, who we are as who we are, and who others are as well, it is then that we become new, transformed. For newness to come, we must first surrender to what is.
When we are able to sit with our feelings—all of them—those which make us vibrate with love, those which toss us about like a tidal wave, or those which make us whimper in despair, we can transcend them. Then, and only then, we can be made new. Burying feelings allows them to grow fiercer in the dark. They may become unseen, but not unfelt. It is in the darkness that evil reigns after all—and spreads.
When we bemoan who we are, we miss the eyes of the One who made us, for we are not just a body living on the earth which will eventually know decay; we are spiritual beings in a human body having a human experience, one which we cannot control as much as we wish or hope we can.
You are INSIDE a body.
You are a multi-dimensional being, a quirky masterpiece, a unique individual created by a God who loves you.
Tomorrow will be a new day, and you will have a new chance to be a new you in a day yet unrealized, but we are not promised tomorrow. As for right now, every second you have, as long as you draw breath, is a gift which hands you the opportunity to choose. Some choices bring life; others bring death.
I never once felt better by wishing to be different or by beating myself up for a wrong I perceived or did. Messes are part of life. Life is a mess. Life is also breathtakingly magnificent.
Grace and love do indeed cover a multitude of sins. How can we give grace if we do not receive or know grace? How can we offer love, if we have no self-love?
Being made new is a process, not a magic formula. Being made new is birthed through grace and love under the gaze of a loving Father who will never love us more or less than right now.
Author | Florence Witt
Florence Witt is a French-born wife, mom of many, and grandmother. She now calls the desert Southwest home. She loves to write compelling, positive messages to stir her readers to a more positive life and view of themselves.
You can read more of Florence’s work on her blog, here.