One of the garage door openers died this past week. As I ordered a new one, I wondered about what parts might interchange. Would the old track work, perhaps only having to change the head and saving some effort? It didn’t take long to recognize that none of the old parts would work on the new equipment.
The box said 2 hours, but they were being overly optimistic. About 3 hours later the opener was functional, and an hour after that the remotes were working. Perhaps an hour later the whole mess was cleaned up and the tools were put away.
What does this have to do with our spiritual lives? I think there is a principle that we need to learn from it. When new things are required, there is always a realization that the past things just won’t be the same.
An increased focus on spiritual things causes us to see old things with a new perspective. The entertainments, recreations, and passions of the past are not of the same value as they used to be. The idea of redeeming the time, causes us to walk with a wiser vision, distinguishing between that which is valuable and that which is a distraction. Redeeming contains a connotation that we are purchasing the time. We are looking at how we spend our time and putting a value on it.
With our new frame of reference, some of the old things just don’t have the value they once did. A day spent without reflection on the new values of a growing and vibrant spiritual life is a day that is cheapened. It is a day lived, but not a day lived for God.
Such decisions alter old relationships, as we not only see differently, but we are seen differently. Things that once were “special” or “exhilarating” become wasted time or impractical. The stories or jokes that were readily shared are seen as coarse, crude or vulgar because they demean, degrade, or belittle others made in God’s image.
Things that at one time didn’t matter, now matter a lot, because we see life through a new lens. Gone are the times that racial, sexist, or misogynistic language can be tolerated, because we view all in their true state of being made in the image of God.
Risqué is replaced with respect. Falsehood falls to a new view of truth. Curses are replaced with blessings. Our language reflects a new way of thinking as we bring our whole being under the sovereign rule of the Christ.
Yes, the old stuff just won’t fit with the new stuff. They are worlds apart.
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