See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:19
Hopefully you recognize this scripture from the prophet Isaiah (I used it last week). It is important for us to open our eyes to new possibilities instead of vainly clinging onto the things of old that just did not work or no longer work for us (notice what I said there, things that did not work or no longer work for us). Even back in the days of the Hebrew Scriptures, God was telling the people to look ahead, look towards something new instead of dwelling on the past.
This does not mean to ignore or forget our past, for it is important, but to not dwell on the old things that do not work (or never worked), the old things that brought us hurt (we need to heal then move forward), or the “way we used to do it.” God is doing something new in our lives.
Recently there is a lot of speculation on the future of the D.C. Comics movie universe. The “DCEU” was a failure. While there were some good movies and some good portrayals of iconic characters like Superman and Wonder Woman, the overall output did not live up to the potential of the possibilities. New leadership is making plans to change everything, and the comic book movie world is buzzing. Unfortunately, because nobody yet knows the plan, everyone is making things up. Will Henry Cavil remain as Superman?
Will Gal Gadot be Wonder Woman? Who will be Batman?
It is amazing that thousands of people will watch a YouTube post that tells us nothing new, rather than an inspiring post that could change their lives.
It is also amazing that so many will argue with the new plan (which has not been released yet) because it changes the old thing so many want (even though everyone admits it did not work).
Unfortunately, the church works the same way. We often get so wrapped up in the old ways of doing things that we miss out on what God is doing right now. We miss the opportunity to meet God today and grow in our faith. We miss opportunities to help someone else see God’s love in action and instead drive them away.
We can be different. We can be better. We can be the community we are called to be and this is where the scriptures help. We read them, not to create lists of rules, rather to be inspired as we read what God has done and look to what God is doing in front of us. Let’s try to do this. As you continue your Advent journey, open your eyes, minds and hearts to see what God has done, is doing and will do.