Saturday, February 02, 2008

New Beginnings

I'm not sure if I've written about this before or not, but I love new beginnings. Doesn't matter if it's a new day, new month, new week, or new year. I just love the feeling of starting over, even though it's mostly an illusion. Life is a continuum, not a chapter book, but the latter is how I treat it a lot of the time.

I suppose I simply like the idea of having life all neat and tidy and in clear-cut stages. I have a tendency to live my life like it's a chapter book. I'll be on a spiritual high where I'm feeling good and am relatively pure, then I'll have a moment of weakness and sin in a "major" way that will make me sulk around for a few days or weeks while I doubt my own salvation and whether or not God has really worked any transformation in my life. Then some new week or month will roll around and I'll perk up, and the whole cycle will start over again.

Now, I know that the Christian life has spiritual ups and downs. C.S. Lewis wrote extensively on this in "The Screwtape Letters." However, I feel that my spiritual ups and downs are too frequent and too extreme. Compared to what, you might ask? Good question. I really don't know. My mind says "other Christians" but, to tell the truth, it's not like other Christians would really be able to tell if I was on a spiritual low. It's really a personal thing, and from all sources I've read it's relatively normal to experience. How a Christian deals with it, I gather, is the important part. Frankly, I don't know how.

I just don't like the lows. I enjoy and am at the most wonderful state of peace and strength when I am on a spiritual high -- when I'm connected to God, overcoming temptations easily, praying like I've never prayed before, and truly desiring to be deep in God's Word. When the lows hit, though, it can be devastating. I become truly desperate for God and the slightest glimmer of evidence that He's working in my life. You've probably seen the cycle play out in this blog several times before.

Right now I'm entering a new month with "new" resolve to be pure and obedient to Christ. Hopefully it will last, and even more hopefully I'll be able to reflect on the experience in a way that is Christ-centered instead of self-centered.

Of course, I'm not the only person who likes new starts. Trendy female singer-songwriters like them too, and of course, knowing me, I have a song and a YouTube video for every occasion. Enjoy Yael Naim and the song "New Soul," from the most recent MacBook commercials.

1 comment:

Brian said...

I know what you mean about new beginnings, there is something refreshing about them.

My spiritual life has been intense since I moved to New York a few months ago and my church here has been challenging me in ways I only imagined. Lent is coming up and this will be the first year I make it a conscious part of my spiritual life. I'm looking forward to the journey our faith community will take together and what new beginnings the Lord has in store for me.

Good luck with your current phase of spiritual-highness, hopefully you'll find things along the way to share.

PS Great song!