Watch for the new thing I am going to do. It is happening already – you can see it now! I will make a road through the wilderness and give you streams of water there. (Isaiah 43:19)
It’s Saturday evening, and all is quiet at Maul Hall.
Rebekah is working on her sermon for tomorrow… and cutting fabric for the new dining room drapes… and thinking about some of the challenges at our new church… and searching on-line for the perfect light fixture… and praying for God’s wisdom as she begins to train leaders… and researching the right way to paint the paneling in the living room… and listening to God’s heart as she visions the future… and wondering quite how we’re going to install that Murphy Bed we ordered a few days ago….
Yes, it is that complex, and convoluted, and concentrated, and challenging to focus on so many varied and pressing concerns simultaneously. But we’re making progress – we believe – on all fronts, and little by little a sense of normalcy is beginning to settle over our lives.
THE “NEW” NORMAL: Of course, by “normal” what I mean is “the new normal.” Because nothing looks all that familiar to us here. But that’s good news, because the last thing we need or want to do is to attempt to replicate our home or our church community from Florida.
Our previous home and community were absolutely wonderful; but what we want to do, and what we honestly believe God has called us to do, is “a new thing.” New and unfamiliar, but still one hundred percent grounded in the principles of love and faith that anchor us in all the right ways.
So what’s happening, in establishing new routines and moving forward into the future, is a fresh and heightened experience of a story that – at the same time – is as old as creation. I often write and talk about our opportunity to live as a part of The Greatest Story Ever Told. Well here’s what’s cool; every time we reinvent ourselves like this, it’s a brand new chapter in an old, old story.
Rebekah and I are both invigorated and spent; excited and a little bit afraid; ready for something brand new, yet grateful for the anchor of the old, old story; up for the new dawn, but glad we’re still orbiting the same sun; reinvigorated by the Spirit of the Living God, while holding on to one-another for dear life.
This is why I’m so glad Sunday morning worship rolls around every week. Yes, we’re full with the thrill of the new, but what’s completely familiar and never-changing is the anchor we have in Jesus. New every morning! Older and more faithful than the beginnings of time.
Tell me the old, old story, Of unseen things above, Of Jesus and His glory, Of Jesus and His love; Tell me the story simply, As to a little child, For I am weak and weary, And helpless and defiled.
Tell me the old, old story, Tell me the old, old story, Tell me the old, old story, Of Jesus and His love.
Tell me the story slowly, That I may take it in—That wonderful redemption, God’s remedy for sin; Tell me the story often, For I forget so soon, The “early dew” of morning Has passed away at noon.
Tell me the story softly, With earnest tones and grave; Remember I’m the sinner Whom Jesus came to save; Tell me the story always, If you would really be, In any time of trouble, A comforter to me.
Tell me the same old story, When you have cause to fear That this world’s empty glory Is costing me too dear; And when the Lord’s bright glory Is dawning on my soul, Tell me the old, old story: “Christ Jesus makes me whole.” ( Kate Hankey, 1883)
“Watch for the new thing I am going to do,” God says; ”It is happening already – you can see it now! I will make a road through the wilderness and give you streams of water there.” (Isaiah 43:19)
Streams of living water! Bring it on, Lord, bring it on - DEREK