Father, help us to joyfully embrace and seek after new things from You. Give us enlightenment to what You have placed in Your word about how You love to give us what is new. Nearly 150 times You word connects You with something new happening. Beyond that, there are scores of other times where my bible mentions Your commitment to bringing about newness with other written expressions – I see it in my bible all over the place. Father, how do we miss this as we so often live to preserve the old? I think we need Your forgiveness for assuming that You are finished doing the unprecedented among Your people. There seems to be within us the assumption that Your mighty works peaked centuries ago, and that You might be merely maintaining today what You formerly accomplished in time past. Your children are addicted to the familiar and the easy. We like well-worn paths where the bottoms of our feet have memorized the well-known ground beneath them. We love to re-travel those places where You once previously took us, and we seem to be content to relive the sentimental syrup of what it previously meant to us. We are not as excited when we sense that You are taking us somewhere that we have never been before. Perhaps we are fearful of the unknown or, worse than that, perhaps we have grown a little lazy in our relationship with You. We love the concept of newness, but not the surrender that must accompany it when we come to understand that You are packing us up from where we are, and are advancing us in a direction that we have never gone before. We remember today, Father, that Abraham and Sarah were very old when you began the most significant season they ever encountered in their lives. Moses was eighty when he received his marching orders from You in the wilderness. At eighty-five years old, Caleb finally got permission from You to take the long-awaited land that You had promised him decades earlier. Caleb was so excited that, as an old man, he was eager to step into the new territory and fight to make it his own. I want to be like Caleb today and to be continue to be like him when I enter my golden years. I do not wish to live for yesterday’s territory. I do not ever want to become yesterday’s man. Please grace me to always be discerning about what You are presently doing and, Father, if You will, please let me get in on it.
Help us not to grow more reluctant for Your new works as we grow older! Help us to stay expectant and hungry as the years pass. Assist those who are younger to have the wisdom to know that those who are older are so important to the Kingdom in this generation. Help the younger not to proudly dismiss the older as if their time had passed. When the older recognize that they must welcome the younger into a more prominent and active role in the Kingdom, help them to deeply trust You as You continue a new work through a new generation. Father, give us new hearts to rejoice in both what You have accomplished and what You will accomplish. All throughout Your word I see the word new… and I cannot bear the thought of merely reading about it without actually experiencing it. You speak of new hearts, new songs, new works from Your hands, new minds, new covenant, new heavens and a new earth. You tell us of new life, our becoming new creations in Your Son, new wineskins and new wine, a new spirit, a new self for the redeemed, a new commandment and a new and living way. New, new, new, new! We need to be renewed in our minds by Your Spirit through Your word. Your love for what is new is all throughout our bibles so please help us to expect momentum and to never believe the lie that You are simply engaged in Kingdom maintenance. For the glory of Jesus Christ, Your Son, awaken us to the new work that You are doing right now. My children need to see it. The people I serve and lead need to experience it. A chaotic, blind, dying and lost world will be impacted when we discern the new move of our Father and step into it.
We treasure the former works which You have done as they breed confidence in our hearts toward the future. Yet, Father, we cringe at the idea of living this life with Jesus as if we were strolling through a museum of history which memorializes what You used to do. We want the new. All of it. This is where I aim my prayers today.
“Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I now declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them.” – Isaiah 42:9
“Be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.” – Ephesians 4:23-24