Friday, January 9, 2009

Pressing On With Positive Change...

There’s an old story I once heard about two men that went to fish. One of them in addition to his fishing gears also carried along a ruler. Now both men stayed side by side of each other as they fished.  Unfortunately, one of the two men only caught fish that were of very little sizes, while the other man seemed to be more fortunate as he caught very big sized fish. But strangely he measured every of the big fish he caught with his ruler, and the ones that were greater than his ruler, he would angrily throw back into the river, while the ones that were of the size of his ruler or even smaller, he would gladly place in his basket. After fishing for a long time in frustration, the one who caught only small fish, turned to his friend with a mixture of envy and bewilderment on his face, and asked him if this was a new fishing technique. If not, why would he catch the desirable big fish and throw them all back into the river except the ones that measured with his ruler or even smaller. The one who caught all the big fish quickly replied him saying, “my friend I’m only catching fish that measures the same size as my frying pan” and he continued fishing (he could have simply bought a bigger sized frying pan instead).

This story reminds me of a passage in the Bible, where it says, “And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. Else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled, and the wineskin will perish. But new wine must be put into new wineskins, and both are preserved together. Also no one having drunk old wine immediately desires new, for he says, the old is better” (Luke 5:37-39). The story told above is an illustration of the last portion of that passage of scripture - Also no one having drunk old wine immediately desires new, for he says, the old is better. Why do people naturally tend to resist a change to something new? Have you heard such statements as, “Oh, the good old days!”? I believe that it’s only a reflection of the fear of the uncertainty of the new. Fear of the experience of a tomorrow which you can’t predict. Fear of the experience of trying out a new idea which no one else has ever tried and proved before, therefore you are not even sure if it will work; and what would people think of me if I fail in this venture? 

Of course the fear of the unknown is as old as man. That’s why it usually takes great courage to face up to new challenges or pioneer a new field of thought or duty. A reminder of Noah who went ahead and built an ark when people of his time had never seen or known what was rain. They must have wondered what he was building that ark for; they must have laughed at him and may have even considered him as a crazy fellow. And probably when he told them that rain was going to fall not too long from then, they must have written him off as gone bananas. They had never seen rain before; it was a new phenomenon to them in their time. But God had revealed to Noah about the rain which was to come. It was the fact that it was a revelation from God that gave him all the courage that he needed. It was a new idea. With the Almighty God lies every new thing. The Bible says that his mercies are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23). Therefore when we stay connected to God, He shows us new things ahead of our time! That’s why I believe it’s very important to enter the New Year with God, and even more importantly, to stay connected to God all through the year. 

Some important things I have learned from the stories above and would like to share, is that in order to step fully into the new, it is better to step out of the old first (Proverbs 28:13, Luke 5:36-38), otherwise, the old will always hinder the new. I can’t achieve new results by working with old ideas. This means that I must endeavor to make a critical review of my past in all honesty to myself so as to learn the lessons that will propel me into my future. Then I must forget the past (Philipians 3:13), after picking up the lessons therein, and laying hold of God’s grace, press on into the future by living out my best each day. Consequently, the passion with which I deal with my today is the only testimony I have concerning my tomorrow. Therefore, my present must essentially be transformed continually to reflect what I believe that God has said about my future (Romans 12:2)

I believe that this is the call for everyone who has put their trust in God today. That all the stains of yesteryears are wiped clean, and the future is stainless like a clean sheet (2 Corinthians 5:17), because the mercies of God are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-23). That the guarantee for tomorrow’s glory is Christ in me today (Colossians 1:27)! That my tomorrow has no bearing with my yesterday anymore, if I change today, and Christ in me is able to help make that change (2 Corinthians 3:18, James 1:23-25). Rather than making New Year resolutions that end up not working and only create an uncertain tomorrow for me, it is better to put my trust in Jesus Christ. With Him, every step that I take into the future is with the data that comes from God and victory is assured! 


1 comment:

raphnix said...

I always believe in positive living too. not only it gives me hope for everything but I can be an inspiration too for some people who give up with their hard works.