I fully believe that here is a new season afoot. In many countries, but particularly in South Africa, we are moving on from COVID. Although there is still much devastation in our country, our politics are dodgy and the economy is looking wonky, but for the individual I believe there is the hope of a new beginning. Whether it is picking up the ropes and continuing where we left off, or redesigning our life so that it looks nothing like it did pre-COVID. Either we are living out a “new normal” as it was called back then, or we are living with what is now considered “normal.” In essence, it is time to move on.
A New Season to Make a New Start
So how do we make a new start? I believe it starts with Jesus our Lord.
All of us, need a fresh revelation of God.
You and I have to once again encounter the supernatural in our lives to make sense of our natural again. Like Moses’ bush, or Elijah’s mountaintop experience, we have to see God as He really is in our lives in this present moment. There has to be a fresh revelation of God, WHO He is and WHAT He can do. We need to put on new, freshly believing eyes: that see with faith what the future holds. We need to put on ears of faith: that Hear God’s words and promises and believe them in our hearts.
In order to experience such revelation, we need to draw near. Moses drew near to the bush, Elijah had to go to the mountain top to stand IN the presence of God. David had to go to the inner sanctuary and confess his sin to God, offering up sacrifice for his sin.
So let God work his will in you. Yell a loud no to the Devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet yes to God and he’ll be there in no time. Quit dabbling in sin. Purify your inner life. Quit playing the field. Hit bottom, and cry your eyes out. The fun and games are over. Get serious, really serious. Get down on your knees before the Master; it’s the only way you’ll get on your feet. (James 4:8-10 MSG)
For a fresh revelation it is important to take the first step: DRAW NEAR.
When we draw near, God always shows up to have a chat. Make an effort, take the time. This is how you draw near:
- Spend some extended time in scripture, remembering the conversations you have had with God recently.
- Spend time meditating on His person and character – WHO he is and WHAT He has done in your life.
- Put on some worship music and worship him by yourself (with no one else around), allow yourself to be open to hear the reminders the Spirit will whisper into your heart about who you are, and Who He is.
Draw Near by Jeremy Riddle is a wonderful song to start this meditation with.
WARNING: When we draw near like this, there is often a choir of voices that gets going on in our head! These voices in our head can suddenly become so loud that we battle to even hear God. They tell us there is not point to this exercise, that God will not draw near. You will need to deal with the voices in your head as part of this process of drawing near to God. But persevere, because God promises…
“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” (James 4:8)
“Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, says the Lord, and I will bring you back from your captivity; I will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you, says the Lord, and I will bring you to the place from which I cause you to be carried away captive. (Jeremiah 29:12-14)”
Make a Commitment to Start
Once you have revelation of God, you need to make a commitment to start. It implies:
- No turning back, no going back to the past as things were before. Moses could not go back to the desert, where things were small, he had to go back to Egypt and set the people free. Elijah had to leave the mountain and go back, anoint Elisha and start a school for prophets. Both had to get on with it and move into the new start that they had been given.
- They had to make the commitment to start out, not knowing how things were going to turn out. All they had, was a fresh vision of God. They had to take hold of God and keep taking hold of Him. They had to trust Him and trust His purposes. They had to be obedient to His will, even if it cost them. They had to abandon all their excuses, dig deep and get on with it. They had to get over their weaknesses, their failure, their “damaged goods”, their emotional baggage, their reduced capacity. They had to do the next thing, whatever it was that God put into their hand to do.
- They had to make the decision, to not let their past govern their expectations of the future. They did not know what the future held, or what would happen, But had to move forward with NO guarantees. Moses didn’t know if he would be killed. Elijah knew that Jezebel was looking for him. Trusting God was a decision they had to take every step of the way. They had to “count themselves lucky” and believe in the goodness of God. Psalm 32:1-2 MSG
Count yourself lucky, how happy you must be—
you get a fresh start, your slate’s wiped clean.
Count yourself lucky— God holds nothing against you
and you’re holding nothing back from him.
- They had to start confessing what they believe, so that they could hear it themselves and take a corresponding step in faith. Their behavior had to match what they believed. (James 2:25-26) They had to start not just being hearers of the Word, but doers of what they believed.
- They had to do it in total dependence on God. Moses confessed that he could not speak, Elijah confessed that he was tired. They had to rely heavily on the grace of God, the Holy Spirit had to ENABLE them to do the next thing. In their own ability, they considered themselves weak, unqualified, incapable, unwilling, no good, a failure. But relying on God’s enabling power, relying on God’s ability, God’s certainty they all took the next step motivated by their faith.
So, making a new start requires a fresh revelation of God and then a commitment to make a start.
WARNING: We cannot just settle for a revelation of God and stay in that warm comfortable place. We still have to live the life that God has given us, which means we need to step out.
Your face Lord will I seek. I will draw near to You so that I may know You and have conviction of You in my heart. Help me to take the next step, trusting that the God of the Universe is with me and watching over my life. Help me to remember that my past does not determine my future. For clearly my eyes have not seen, nor my ears heard, nor my mind conceived, what God has prepared for me, who loves Him (2 Cor 2:9).