By Jacqueline Stutsman
Soon after brainstorming ideas for this entry, I realized I had nothing “new” to say. When I purposed to write this blog, I made a quick list of passages that God used in the past to teach me something or bring me through a dark time in my life, but all of these lessons (profound as they were), were things I learned years ago. Then, deep in my soul the question formed, “Jacqueline, what NEW truth are you learning now?”. The question landed—I was both
silenced and convicted.
Our Christian walk is not about arriving, we never arrive at this side of glory, but God is constantly desiring to teach us deeper truths about Himself. His design is for us to continue growing until the day He appears or calls us home. Relying solely on truths I learned in my youth alone to feed my soul would be proof of stunted spiritual growth. As I pondered the Holy Spirit’s question to me, I realized that God certainly can and does use the lessons of the past to
strengthen and encourage me today, but when He does this, it is usually accompanied by deeper discoveries and fresh perspective.
In Disney’s movie, Ratatouille, loyal and frequent diners at Paris’ popular restaurant “Gusteau’s” ask the waiter one evening “what does the chef have, that is new?”. This was enough to send the kitchen staff into a panic. For a restaurant that prided itself on achieving perfection with their late chef’s genius, the question of creating something new was preposterous. For those
of you who’ve seen the movie, you know that they dusted off an old recipe card and tweaked it to be better than what it originally was. This is what it’s like when the Holy Spirit brings to memory a verse or even a song that I have long forgotten. I’ve found myself remembering lyrics to songs and only now for the first time really understanding the deeper meaning behind them. Passages of scripture that I memorized as a young girl with my dad have popped into my mind and ministered to me, bringing with them a new perspective now that I’m in a completely new season of life.
One such passage is Psalm 121
I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord watches over you—
the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.
Have you seen mountains lately? Or can you recall ever seeing them? I’m imagining the mountains of Colorado right now, and they are absolutely stunning and majestic. That same God, who made those marvels, is watching over me and making sure my foot does not slip, and He does this without needing sleep! He vigilantly watches over us, without requiring sleep or slumber (deeeep sleep—the kind I would like very much to have right now as a new mom). I am so encouraged by this. When I was a young girl, the bit about sleep didn’t mean much to me, but NOW? Wow, I’m floored at how powerful and unlike myself God is. I also am taking comfort in the fact that the pressure is off of my shoulders, because He is the one watching over me and my family.
So with that, I ask you, what is God teaching you that is NEW? What old truths are you finding fresh perspectives in? Let’s ask ourselves and each other these questions regularly and deepen our faith.