“And he said to them, ‘Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like a master of a house, who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old'” (Matthew 13:52 ESV).
We all want to be more like Jesus. We all are troubled by our inability to do so. It’s not that we don’t make progress; we just never feel as though we have made enough.
In some ways that is good. Recognizing our shortcomings can keep us humble. We realize that we are not what we hope to be, while acknowledging that we also are not what we once were.
It can also be a bad thing. It is so easy to become discouraged by our failure to live up to the impossibly high standard of holiness. When we give in to the same old temptation for the umpteenth time, hating ourselves every moment, trapped in a vicious cycle, we affirm our unworthiness to be called Christians.
But when we change our perspective, and see our lives with a big picture view, a different image develops.
As children we have the whole world in front of us. Time moves slowly as we learn the elementary things that prepare us for life.
As teens we are caught between two worlds. We are no longer children; but we are not adults. We have a little knowledge, but we lack real-world application. We fail to see that which we do not know because that information is blocked out by what we think we know.
Once we had “been around the block a few times”, we finally start to acquire some wisdom. We finally become teachable. We recognize what we know and what we don’t. We take our discipleship to the next level. It’s rubber-meets-the-road Christianity. We actually have the freedom to choose, unlike in our childhood and teen years.
We are reminded of decisions we made when we were young and foolish. We try to make better decisions in the future because we remember the consequences of the bad ones in the past.
Discipleship is a daily activity. In some sense it is like the movie Groundhog Day. Bill Murray’s character wakes up each day only to find he is stuck on Groundhog Day. But he remembers what happened from each time he has relived it, and changes his actions and behavior to get different results.
We can’t relive yesterday, though we may try. But we can use the things we experienced yesterday to make today a little better, to make ourselves a little better. When we live our lives day-to-day, learning from yesterday and gaining strength and wisdom that we can use today, we are bringing out of our treasure “what is new and what is old.”
Blessings on your day!