In verse five of the second reading of this 5th Sunday of Easter, (Revelation 21:1-5), God says, "Behold, I make all things new" (vs. 5) and He backed these words with authority by uttering them while seated on His throne, and then directed that they be written down because “They are trustworthy and true”.
Life, as we know it, is an interesting mixture of beginnings, endings, and new beginnings. Every moment of our lives, every transition we encounter—when we come into this world; when we move away from home; when we get married; when we have a baby; when we become a mother or a father; when all the children leave home; when a spouse, a parent, a child, or a sibling passes on, when you get a new job; when you go away to college; etc.—all are experiences in new beginnings and it is up to us to choose either to live in the moment or to live in the past.
It is not easy to respond to new beginnings; to the new thing God is doing in my life because new beginnings can be very challenging. They are filled with uncertainties and are highly unpredictable. It is easy to get trapped in my old ways; in the old world I am accustomed to, and so resist the invitation to move on; to let go, let God, and get going. We settle with what we know and become blind to what we are being called to become. There was an artist who had produced a beautiful artwork and admired it every day. One day, his master went and poured crude paint all over it. The artist was livid and when he eventually found out that it was his master who had done it, he inquired of him “Why? Why did you do it?” to which his master responded, “Because you have become so focused on it that it was retarding your growth and creativity. Go and paint something better than that”.
New beginnings require putting off the old self and putting on a new self. We are called to take a new perspective on things; to see things differently from the way the world sees it; to a new way of living life; a new way of looking at and dealing with people; a new way of perceiving and understanding reality. No wonder, Matthew 5:27-44 makes the comparison between what was said of old and what the new thing God is doing is saying—“You have heard that it was said of old…. But I tell you ….” I invite you to read this passage. It is at the heart of the new thing God is doing in our lives as Christians.
We are also called by God to be part of making things new in people’s lives; to bring them to the new life in Christ, to help them renew their love for Jesus; to help the Church preach the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ to the ends of the earth through our time, talent, and treasure; to help those who have lost their way come back to the fold; to help create a welcoming environment in the Church, so that people can experience the life-giving power of God’s love. We are the hand of God in making all things new in other people’s life. This is our call; it is our vocation; it is our mission; it is what God expects of us. We cannot leave it to anyone; we simply ought to embrace it with joy and do it. May God help us to embrace the new things He is doing in our lives and grant us the courage to bring about new things in the life of others and in the life of our Church, Amen!