Here in central Virginia, the trees and flowers are blooming, the mountains are again becoming a vibrant green and the weather is beautiful. This is always a great time as we experience the renewal of nature following the decay that winter brings.
In spiritual terms, we all get to those points in life where we need renewal. In one of the most recognized passages of Scripture, the 23rd Psalm, we read, “He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake” (verse 3, NKJV).
In reference to this passage, The Liberty Bible Commentary tells us this: “Not only is physical sustenance provided by the Good Shepherd, but spiritual restoration is provided, as well. When the soul becomes sorrowful, He revives it. When our spirit becomes weak, He reinvigorates it. We have freedom from depletion, for every time we would stray, as a sheep would, He brings us back.”
In Romans 12:2, we see that a great way to experience renewal is to forsake the temptations and triviality of the world so that God can truly satisfy our souls. This verse reads, “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”
The world may be wicked, but it appeals to our sinful nature. That’s why I would suggest that spiritual renewal is something we often need on a daily basis. See what Psalm 51:10 says: “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”
A clean heart is not something that you or I can keep. Only God can preserve it within us and it must be through our constant, daily, relentless pursuit of Him.
The result of this type of holy, Christ-dependent living allows us to ascend to great spiritual heights. II Corinthians 4:16 tells us, “Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.” All we see is dying, but our soul is quickened in Christ.
Watchman Nee, who spent the last 20 years of his life imprisoned for his faith in Christ under the reign of the Chinese Communist Party, said, “If you perform your part, God will fulfill His.” And that certainly is the great thing about God. His promises are never failing. So when we are living for Him, He continually empowers us to accomplish great things for His glory.
Life can get tough; that’s for sure. But God wants to renew your soul over and over again. He knows your weaknesses, your insecurities, your inner turmoil and your desires. He wants to use you specifically to accomplish great things for Him. And that’s why He forgives our failures, bolsters our weaknesses and renews our trembling spirits, strengthening us way beyond ourselves.
Like the old song says, “Morning by morning, new mercies I see.” Remember, God doesn’t hold grudges and He wants that daily, morning by morning, relationship of renewal with all of His followers.
Your friend in Christ,