Have you ever played the lottery when the power ball is hovering up around a billion dollars? The thoughts of how drastically that sum of money would change our lives is fun to plan out and talk about. At work they always go in together to buy multiple tickets so I participate too - I certainly don’t want to be the only one left working if they all end up retiring early and buying neighboring beach houses.
But the truth is that all of the money in the world can’t really buy me a new life. Because I would still be me. Even in new clothes. Even in a fancy car. Same old insecurities, fears, anger, jealousy, unforgiveness…same old me. A billion dollars would buy me new surroundings - but not really a new life. Life comes from the inside - and there is only one person who can make things new there.
“For he has dedicated a new, life-giving way for us to approach God. For just as the veil was torn in two, Jesus’ body was torn open to give us free and fresh access to him!” Hebrews 10:20.
A new, life-giving way. Gone with the old ways of doing things. God - really the only one who can change the continual messed-up cycle of all things - decided to put an off switch to the sickening merry-go-round I was stuck on. Easter is the most magical culmination of the most unbelievable story - that our Creator would become one of us, and willingly hang on a cross to show us how much we are loved. Then beat death in a showdown with eternal implications and triumphantly announce a NEW way to live. In an upside-down, inside-out way he gave all of us a new life.
A new hope. A new outlook. All because of Easter.
Maybe you are discouraged because you can’t seem to shake old habits. Perhaps you feel like the same old person you were five years ago - no growth or breakthroughs. Some of you might be thinking that there is little hope that anything in your lives will change and be new. You feel condemned to live the same thing, be the same person, have the same struggles…forever.
But Easter is the proof that the old HAS gone! The same power that raised Jesus from the dead has freed me from my old self and changed everything! “My old identity has been crucified with Christ and no longer lives. And now the essence of this new life is no longer mine, for the Anointed One lives his life through me - we live in union as one! My new life is empowered by the faith of the Son of God who loves me so much that he gave himself for me, dispensing his life into mine!” Galatians 2:20
We can kiss our old issues, fears, hang-ups and debilitating behaviors goodbye. Jesus came to dispense HIS life into OURS. We can have faith that when God begins something, he WILL see it through to completion. We WILL be made completely and beautifully new, as he dispenses more and more of himself into us. That old life doesn't stand a chance. May you find incredible joy this season as you meditate on the words from Paul and learn to live in union with the only one who can truly give us a completely new life - no lottery ticket needed.
-Kelly Joyce (a member of the Crown of Beauty community)