Saturday, November 15, 2014
Fear of the New Thing
By: B. Keith
Benji used to have this fuzzy blue puppy blanket that instantly got him to sleep. It was a miracle worker, Mommy's helper, the only thing that got me a break.
Well that was until I misplaced it.
We spent weeks looking beneath sofas and even inside vent ducts. Then we started trying to find substitutes but none ever quite "fit". This also meant weeks of bouncing, endless nights of playing lullabies on a loop and trying desperately to find anything to get normal back.
I'd all but forgotten about the blue blanket months later – that was until Ben discovered this big floppy eared bunny that he now likes to have laid across his tummy when he gets sleepy. The bunny is at least ten years old. It is dingy and green. (Sounds a little gross right?) Frankly, it smells a little weird. He found it when he learned to scoot right next to the closet I was cleaning out. Long story short - he loved it and took it for his own.
It's old. But to him it's a new thing. Now it's become his comfort. It has replaced the little lost blanket and even though we have since found it, the bunny still WINS when it comes to nap time.
But I remember when he first saw that green bunny a few months ago. When all he could do was sit in the hall stationary, he didn't care a thing about it; but that was before he could grasp it.
I think we adults are a lot like our children. We would like to think that we outgrow our blue blankets, but we never really do. They just change shape, take on new forms. The things that comfort me are my old red sweater, my hippo pillow pet (like a million years old) and life that doesn't change! But like you, I have discovered that the last thing I mentioned is something that comforts us all – and something we all eventually learn is quite impractical!
Life is always changing. It is never stagnant. Even when we think it is.
"Behold I will do a new thing." (Isaiah 43:19)
It's the verse I have turned to so many times when the "comfortable" was ripped from my hands.
We all long for the new thing. But when the new thing comes, God has to pry the old thing from our hands. At first it's uncomfortable. At first, let's face it ... it stinks. But soon, like my Ben, we find that God hasn't taken away our blue blanket, whatever that means for us, away forever. He's just holding it a while. He wants us to find our comfort in Him, not in it; and when we can grasp the comfort of the new thing - we learn it's better. It's just as safe. It's just as miraculous and praise worthy.
The new thing can take on many forms. It can be incredibly exciting or completely the opposite –
Maybe you have recently discovered a new season in your life that is uncomfortable. Maybe you are battling an illness, starting over, praying for a miracle or walking into the pathways of the unknown.
Whatever your new thing is – I want to assure you this much – God is a God of new things. Like the Israelites, God is always moving us forward.
But forward doesn't have to be scary. His track record is incredible. He never starts something He can't finish. He never moves without purpose. He never fails. He is faithful and He can be faithfully trusted with the new thing.
Until you find your Promised Land, or in this case your green bunny, may God be your comfort. May He fill you to overflowing as He whispers to you "Everything's going to be ok, My child." And most of all, may you discover that all changes are changes you can find rest in; especially when they are faced with the God of never-changing-grace. (Romans 8:18-19)