Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. —2 Corinthians 5:17 NKJV (emphasis mine)

The sun streamed down and warmed us as my friend and I toured a new Veteran’s Memorial Cemetery. Most of it was still in the preliminary stages of construction with the promise of things to come. It is an absolutely beautiful spot, just off an old, back country road, situated on rolling knolls in the middle of an evergreen-dotted forest along the rustic Mousam River. Just driving along the winding entrance road and over the stone bridge that crosses the forest-shaded, boulder-studded watershed, visitors are flooded with a sense of relaxed calm and renewal.

As we walked about the perfectly manicured grounds, we saw a solitary, elderly gentleman in uniform sitting on a nearby bench, hat in hand. As we walked over to him, we introduced ourselves. He was a veteran whose wife had died earlier in the winter and was now being laid to rest. He had come early for the service to have some “time alone with her” before her interment.

We sat with him and asked him about his wife. He told us how and when they met. He spoke of the favorite things he remembered and loved so much about her and about what life was like for them over the years. The more he talked, the more animated and alive he became. The conversation led me to ask if they ever ticked each other off. He threw back his head with a hearty laugh saying, “Boy did we ever!” He then spent the next little while telling us how alike and how different they were from each other. How, over a lifetime together, they had learned to get along, learned how to live with each other’s differences and complement each other’s strengths. How to forgive one another. He said that forgiving was the key. Keep short accounts and start each day brand new.

I don’t remember his name or most of what he said, but I remember the look of love and joy in his eyes mixed with that grief in missing her. Marks of regret were etched on his face. I will forever remember his last words—things he wished he had not done, things he would give anything if he could only go back and undo them.

As the service grew close to starting time, he became emotional and thanked us for letting him have a little bit of his wife back again for just a moment. My friend and I walked away very different people that day.

As I reflect back on that encounter, I consider things in my own life that I wish I had never chosen to see, read, hear, say, do, or experience. I think it would be nice to be able to simply lift the page off like from my childhood Magic Slate pad or shake my Etch A Sketch and start over afresh with a clean slate. I’m so thankful that in Christ, all those things are no more. All things have been made new.Today’s verse was written by the Apostle Paul. He was talking to believers who were born anew in Christ out of a very pagan and idolatrous, highly sensual, sexually-oriented culture and lifestyle, one they still very much struggled with. Paul was writing to them as one who, by his own words, had the most to regret. He called himself the chief of sinners. He had a past that gave cause for many to point their fingers at him. He wanted to spare his fellow believers from having to experience and live with regret. Life was hard enough with all the pressures from without, including the pressures from false teachings and accusations that were creeping into the church, without making it harder by their own personal, regrettable, avoidable choices.

Paul also knew that, like him … and like me, there are things that cause deep grief in our hearts to which we could say, “I wish I hadn’t ….” So he gives them—he gives us—this God-directed, beautiful reassurance that those who are in Christ are made brand new! All the old “stuff” has been done away with. Everything is made like new.

Sometimes the smallest of our words can carry the biggest weight. Did you notice them in today’s verse? “If” “is” “in” “all.”

“If” speaks of choice. That choice is twofold: God chose us. He didn’t have to, but He did. We get to choose to accept His gift of making all things new. And when we do, He does! He makes all things new. Amazing.

“Is” speaks of the certainty and the power of God and His Word. “Is” leaves no room for doubt or mutability. What God deems, is!

“In” speaks of a place, one of protection, safety, and restoration. That place is found in Jesus Christ alone.

“All” speaks of the inclusivity of God’s invitation. He calls all, and all who come to Him will be saved. Absolutely all will be made brand new.

Do you have regrets today? Do you remember times and actions and wish you could just press the delete button? Well … in Him, Jesus will make you a new creation, and He will take all those mistakes, all those unwise choices, all those regrettable moments and make them all new again. He may allow us to experience the consequences of some of our choices, but He promises to take them all and use them for the new. He won’t waste them, and He won’t leave us to walk through it alone. He’s right there with us, living in and through us.

Whether we’re just one regrettable choice away from God or a whole long road of choices away, it’s always only one step back to Him: one step back to all things being made new. Because of that, we no longer have to say, “I wish I hadn’t ….” We can now say, “Look at what God has done!” “If, is, in, all!”

Father, I give You all the praise for there is no God like You. Thank You for making all things new. Thank You for new life, new hope, and new beginnings. You don’t just patch and repair. You tear down and rebuild us up brand new from the inside out. I love You, Lord!

O for a thousand tongues to sing
My great Redeemer’s praise,
The glories of my God and King,
The triumphs of His grace!

He breaks the power of canceled sin,
He sets the prisoner free;
His blood can make the foulest clean,
His blood availed for me.
—Charles Wesley

Safe in His care,
Donna Perkins




Sweet Selah Ministries

To inspire a movement away from the belief that “busy is better”
and toward the truth of God’s Word that stillness and knowing
Him matter most—and will be reflected in more effective work and service

To offer biblical resources and retreats that help women pause (Selah)
and love God more deeply as they know Him more intimately (Sweet)

If you’ve been blessed, keep the blessing going!
Click over to our Donation page … and thanks.





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