As fall is ending and more leaves of many hues fall down each day, I am reminded of once hearing that there can’t be a resurrection without first a death. Jesus had to die in order to be resurrected. Various new, fresh things follow the demise of something else. The beautiful orange, red and yellow leaves must fall, dry up and erode but in the spring new buds appear and blossom into green leaves fill of life. So, too, fruit is picked and eaten or falls and rots but new fruit will come forth again the next year. Perennial flowers dry and the seeds drop out of the pods into the ground, to bloom as new flowers after time in the cold, dark winter.
Death is the prerequisite to resurrection, the new life God intends. John Ortberg
Sometimes there are things we harbor in our heart that we must put to death such as unforgiveness, pride, rebellion,and self-reliance. We must die to self by repenting of these things. In return, God promises us a clean heart and we will experience the joy and freedom that accompanies that. In our relationships, we may need to let go of expectations, judgements, even sometimes hopes and dreams. By releasing these, we can focus on the positives, what we do have, and nurture those to allow the relationship to blossom.
Jesus instructed how important it is to let go of the old in order to embrace the new; His words about old and new wineskins are recorded in three gospels: Matthew 9:14-17, Mark 2:21-22 and Luke 5:33-39. He said to “put new wine into fresh wineskins, and both are preserved“, otherwise, the new wine will ruin the old wineskin and the wine will be ruined and lost. This shows us that in life we will have to let go of old ideas, relationships, habits and goals in order to experience the wonderful new things that await us.
We also need to put to death our self centered will and seek the will of God in order to fulfill the calling and destiny He intends for us. We may need to let go of a personal dream to seek and find the dream that God has placed in our heart. Proverbs tell us that when we trust in the Lord, He will give us the desires of our heart. This actually works two ways- He places desire in our heart that comes form His heart and then He equips us and makes a way so that those dreams come to pass. This is such a beautiful promise!
If you are going through some sort of loss and death of something today, take heart that God can bring forth new life in its place and often it is more beautiful than the first.
Have you seen this principal work in your life? Feel free to share your testimony of how God brought some new, good thing in place of that old part of you and your life that you had to let go.