The Path of Renewal – Process Not Destination

(from the February 2013 Presbyterian Record)

Renewal is God’s intent for us and the world.

When we start talking about renewal lots of ideas (and even some old prejudices) come to mind. But at its core, renewal is God’s life-giving, restorative work. It transforms us little by little into Christ’s image and brings the world under Christ’s reign.

This transformation can seem miraculous, idealistic, maybe even impossible. We’re only humans after all. Humility isn’t bad, but neither is a longing to experience the abundant, eternal life Christ came to offer. It’s a life that flows out of us like living water (John 7:38). Our moments of feeling dry, weary, needing a change, or like butter spread on too much bread (to quote a hobbit) can be good. In those moments, if we’ll listen, we’ll hear God’s Spirit wooing us, calling us to walk again the path to renewal.

Our first step on this path is to return. It might sound strange, but didn’t Jesus begin his ministry by saying “repent, for the kingdom of God is among, within, near you?” Despite the connotation “repent” has today, Jesus was simply saying, stop doing what doesn’t work and return to the life of God already present with you. As we let go of the behaviours, perspectives and perceptions that have only brought death, we are … Read More