Guest Post by: Christine Laporte
“Therefore if anyone is in Christ He is a new creation, the old has gone, the new is here”. (2 Corinthians 5:17)
While walking the family dog Maya one afternoon, I happened upon a small American flag lying in the grass. It’s wooden stem was broken and dirty from being stuck in the dirt. Probably not even worth $1.00, the colors of red, white and blue were dulled and gray.
As a child and throughout my life I have learned to be very respectful to the American flag and cognizant of the freedom it stands for. I confess I get visibly emotional when I hear the song, “There She Stands” written by Michael W. Smith. He wrote it after our country was attacked on September 11, 2001. The tattered flat that remained in New York was a symbol of resilience. To the soldier fighting on foreign soil, the flag represented hope and was synonymous with safety and home.
I picked up the little flag, took it home and placed it on my kitchen counter. Later I hand washed it with dish soap and tepid water. A couple days later I found it dried on the dish rack. Although the stem remained broken and slightly tainted with dirt but not the flag. It was bright with it’s patriotic red, white and blue pattern.
Almost immediately I thought that this was a very good analogy of the way the Lord cares for us; His desire to scoop us up, take us into the family of faith, clean us us through the powerful blood of Christ, and allow us to sit a bit and “dry out” from our time spent in the murky waters of sin and this life. The best response is for us to stay close to Him, learn about His love, share that with others and love the Lord back.
For those who love the Lord, He has good plans for us “and those who are called according to His purposes”. (Romans 8:28) In another beloved Bible verse, the Lord goes on to promise that those plans are “plans not to harm us but to give us hope and a future”. (Jeremiah 29:11) God desires for us to have a new start, a fresh start with a clean slate. He is in the business of redemption. What a comforting truth we have to hang our hat on.
When we look at the definition of redemption at Bible Study Tools, we read: “Redemption is the purchase back of something that had been lost, by the payment of a ransom. The Greek word so rendered is apolutrosis, a word occurring nine times in Scripture, and always with the idea of a ransom or price paid”. And like the little flag, and on a larger scale of importance, we get a new identity, a new eternal home and a new body.