Today I realized the month of January was almost over. The month which seems caught between two worlds, winter and a new year. I tend to think of January as a rough draft for the rest of the year. What happens in this month may or may not impact the rest of the year. If I don’t like what happened, I can try again in February since most people won’t remember January anyway. That’s the idea of the reset buttons we have on our technology. If we make a mess of something we can just reset the site, the page, whatever, and try again.
When I went away to work in another state in 1990, I was looking for a reset button. I didn’t like me- who I had become, how I had been acting, what had been happening around me. I realized that no one knew me, what I said I was, who I was, what I believed or did was completely unknown in my new setting. Like a package still in the wrapping. I could be anything.
At first I tried to pretend, but I couldn’t keep up the charade for long. Eventually, my past found my heart and mind and I struggled with people being disappointed in the “real” me . But it wasn’t that way at all. A new friend and I sat in my tent one day and I poured out all the messes I had made, the brokenness I carried inside. The feeling that I would never be good enough for anyone again. He listened, asked a couple questions, but never once did he say he was repulsed or disgusted by me. My friend accepted me just as I was that day.
Weeks later, I accepted Christ.
I didn’t have to try to be good anymore. I was good, I was precious, I was new, I was priceless. The day Jesus came into my life, I was reset. Nothing of my past remained. No mistake, no brokenness, no heart ache remained. All the lies I told, all the pain I felt. Gone. God took the sins I had committed and threw them away. Psalm 103:12 describes our sins being as far from us as the east is from the west. I was reset. Over the years I have asked God for help to reset parts of me that have fallen out of order from His purposes. I know that I am not perfected on this side of Heaven, so I pray for small resets during my faith journey.
I also pray for those who are still trying to reset themselves. The people I love who have yet to accept the offer of Christ’s grace, love, and forgiveness. I pray for God to reach them in their pain and open their eyes to see that His love is enough. His grace is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9). I pray for them to stop trying to measure up to Heaven’s standards. We are such fools to imagine that we can meet God’s expectations. He knew we couldn’t all the way back before He made Adam and Eve. He knew they would fail and He made them anyway. He created the whole world, even when it would hurt Him when mankind turned on itself. He still loved us.
So the question comes: if God loved us, knowing we would fail, and He still created the universe and mankind, doesn’t it come that God would have put into plan a reset button of Heavenly proportion? That’s why Jesus came. That’s why we celebrate Christmas and Easter. He came, lived suffered, died for us, and then Jesus was resurrected. Jesus is the reset button for all of us. It’s just a decision we have to make- will we or won’t we decide to ask God to reset our hearts, our minds, or souls, our eternity?
Best Beloved, I have come so far because of the reset button I selected in 1990. I can only pray that you have asked Jesus to do the same in your life. To know the joy of freedom, of the ultimate Mulligan. To be free to embrace joy, mercy, grace. To hold fast to love as it was created to be. This is the hope and prayer I have for you. For those in my life who are in pain. For your loved ones.
Will you join me in praying for them?