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
Do you ever just cringe when you think about your past? Especially when those specific moments come up and you think, “How dumb could I be?”. No? Just me? Okay, well, it really gets me, and this morning some of those moments came flooding back, but instead of staying stuck on those, God reminded meHe can still use me.
Now, despite my past mistakes, I consider myself fairly knowledgeable when it comes to the Bible. I spent my childhood in church every time the doors were opened and even went to a Christian school through junior high and most of high school. In my adulthood, I’ve done numerous Bible studies, and I’ve read through the Bible several times. I definitely have the gist of the story down. So when I began a new Bible study by Angie Smith called Seamless, I started to question if I needed to continue with it.
The whole study of Seamless takes you from creation to the end of the story to show you how the whole Bible works together. After my first session, I was ready to peace out. I mean, I know how this all works out and how God has his hand in it the whole time, but then I heard God whisper, “I want to teach you something. You don’t know it all.”*
So, I soldiered on, and I’m so glad I did. These last few days we’ve been discussing Jacob, Isaac’s younger son. He was something, let me tell you. In Genesis 25:29-34 we see where Jacob tricked his brother, Esau, out of his birthright. Then just a couple of chapters over in Genesis 27:18-29, Jacob deceives his father to get Esau’s blessing. Fast forward several years in Genesis 32:22-32, Jacob wrestles with God. During this time God changed who he was and in doing so, changed his name to Israel.
I say all this to say that God can change you and me. He used Jacob to lead a nation. He and his descendants became Israel, God’s chosen people. He can take who you and I are, and He can change us. He can take the name you have (failure, adulterer, cheat, addict, liar, deceiver) and He can give you a new name (child of God, redeemed, loved, friend of God, protected, strong, bold).
I’m so glad I’m not who I was before. I’m thankful He has given me a new name and continues to change me daily.