Necessary Endings – Part 6
Are You Ready To Change?
“Out with the old. In with the new””
As the end of the year approaches many just want a fresh new start with new opportunities. However, a fresh new start will not emerge through osmosis. There must be change. A look in the rear view mirror of 2015 could very well be comprised with “self motivating” inner talk to change eating habits, drinking habits, smoking habits, exercising habits, spending habits, dating habits, and so on. It becomes wearisome to consistently begin a New Year with old frustrations.
Resistance to change is an action taken by a person or a group of people when they fear that change will cause them harm. Resistance to change comes when the old way brings more comfort than the thrill of new possibilities. Some would rather die than change. Receptivity to change will yield positive results when the movement of the Holy Spirit prompts the change. When what gets old in your life has run its course there must be a change to contain what God has for you that is new!
Jesus simply taught, “Out with the old, in with the new!” How did Jesus teach a lesson that certain endings were necessary? In Matthew 9:16-17 Jesus said, “No man putteth a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to fill it up taketh from the garment, and the rent is made worse. Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.”
The question is, “Are you ready for change?”
Most people want to do away with the old and embrace the new but first they must learn this lesson from Jesus.To embrace the “out with the old, in with the new” one must understand that when God gets ready to do something new:
- There Must Be New Preparation To Contain New Contents: New wine skins were prepared to contain new wine. There were no exceptions. There was too much at stake. You stand the risk of loosing too much. New wine skins were placed through a rigorous process to make them ready. If new wine was placed in old skins the fermentation process would cause the old wine skins to crack under the fermentation process. Preparation is essential to what will be placed within. If you have been through a lot in 2015 perhaps God is preparing you for what He’s about to put in you. Never ignore new struggles that surface. It could very well be that God is preparing to put something new in you. Perhaps it’s new patience, new love, new ambition that you didn’t have in 2015. God’s not going to put more in you without preparing you to contain the contents.
- Internal Change Results In External Expansion: The process of fermentation taking place on the inside of the new wineskins caused the wineskins to expand. Because the wineskins were prepared to contain the contents expansion was normal and even expected. That’s just what happens when you place new wine in new skins, the fermentation process causes it to expand. In the bible wine is symbolic of the Holy Spirit, which every believer receives at the point of salvation. When the Holy Spirit dwells within the life of a believer the spiritual reaction is fermentation. Spiritual fermentation will stretch the person’s faith beyond capacity to achieve more for God’s Glory.
- Old Methods Are Hazardous To New Productivity: The Pharisees were like old wineskins. They were rigid, un-flexible and stuck in their traditional lifestyles. Their minds or hearts were not pliable. They could not receive Jesus because He would not be restricted or relegated by their rules. It was time for change and when Jesus stepped on the scene He symbolized the “New Wine of the Gospel.” The New Wine of the Gospel will stretch you to do away with the old to walk into what’s new. It all boils down to every Christian taking a look at life and asking the critical question, “Am I ready for change?”
When God gets ready to do something new in your life He will take you through something to prepare you. The process will make where you at uncomfortable and force you to expand your territory or else you will crack under pressure. The key is realizing that what once worked for you doesn’t work anymore.
How do you prepare for change?
- Open Your Heart: The new wine of the Gospel is the power of the Holy Spirit and the new wine skins are those who have become a new person in Jesus Christ. On the Emmaus Road two travelers opened their hearts to the Gospel. Luke 24:32 (KJV) – 32 And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?
- Allow The Spirit To Do The Work: The Holy Spirit works in us to promote change and bring God Glory. Ephesians 3:20-21 (KJV) – 20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, 21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.
- Pour Out Your Contents – Give God the best you have on the inside in 2016. The Apostle Paul said in Philippians 2:17 (KJV) 17 Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy, and rejoice with you all. Paul was saying that we should pour out our lives in service to God with a life that would bring Him Glory.
Jesus poured out His life. God prepared Jesus a body. He is the New Wine of the Gospel and on Calvary He poured it “all” out. He left nothing but He gave it all and as a result, we have new life. This is a clear message to the Body of Christ that life is about moving on to newer heights and newer possibilities in Christ.
IT’S TIME FOR A CHANGE,
Dr. Oscar T. Moses