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The Newness Of Spring
by Kristoffer Riley
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A few lines from the Arctic. We are putting the sleds and snow dogs up for the year, our igloos are melting and we can finally put our mukluks in storage. Yes, several weeks after our fellow citizens of the U.S. of A. welcomed spring, us Nanooks can to. We have been averaging anywhere between 37 and 52 degrees for the last two weeks and the snow and ice are once again becoming water. Of course, with at least 6 months of glacial build up puddling and ponding on the ground, we might want to keep the galoshes at the ready.

With this changing of the seasons, it is once again fun to witness the odd phenomenon of people donning spring attire for the sake of donning spring attire; then trying to pretend they didn't tack on an extra fifteen pounds during hibernation.

(Little tip: If it was snug last August and you've spent the last 150 days plus studying law from Joe Brown and Marilyn Milian while knocking back cocoa and truffles, it might not fit now. Trust me, I know.)

I only kid.

Seriously though...As old man winter passes the baton to lady spring, I am once again amazed at how awesome God is. Lamentations 3:22-23 rings clear in my mind. Truly, His mercies are new every morning. In pondering the various changes that occur during this time of regeneration, I am reminded of a common transgression we are often guilty of. As spring brings new life and change takes place, there are some occasions of newness that are more noticeable to the human eye than are others. Obviously, the weather is quick to grab our attention as are the changes in how we must dress for it. Yet, in all the hustle and bustle of the dawning season, the subtleties of spring may be lost if we are not carefully observant. How easy it can be to overlook the trees and shrubbery as they too shed their cloak of heaviness, receiving in its place the garment of praise. The animals (varying in breed and species based on location) even embrace the newness of life. As I type this, I realize something...

The rest of creation: Plants, trees, flowers, animals, the sun, clouds, moon, and stars; they all evolve (change, transition, metamorphisize) naturally and without interference on their part. God ordained the seasons to change as they would and He set in motion the regeneration of the greenery. All of this He ordained without asking the trees if they would mind losing their leaves again. He didn't have to coerce the bears into hibernation by taking them through fiery trials...they just do what they're created to. The birds sing His praise without being pumped up by a feathered praise and worship team. The trees of the fields clap their hands without being prompted by the Pastors.

All of creation rejoices as God does a new thing in them. And guess what. Months ago, when summer gave way to autumn and autumn transitioned to the perceived deadness of winter, they didn't quarrel then either.

This brings me to my point: Why do we fight the changes God desires to do in us? He obviously regards us higher than the rest of His creation (Matthew 6). He even gave us a choice in the matter...to choose life or death. Yet, when a winter season comes in our life and we must die to some things or hibernate from some people or places, we resist to our own detriment. When we must lose some of our leaves and have our withered limbs exposed (in order that new life can come forth) we attempt to take authority over the devil and bind up foul spirits. Little do we know we are fighting against the change in our nature that God set in motion when we accepted Christ as Lord and Savior and agreed to follow Him in season, out of season, and when the seasons change. We fight the very thing that is needful for us to grow into the next season of our lives. We kick against the prick and then wonder why things are not going our way and why we're not experiencing the blessings of God. Further still, we hinder our witness because instead of the world seeing the change that life in Christ can bring, they see the results of a stagnated, frustrated and fruitless tree trying to keep its leaves intact in order to hide its barrenness.

The Word of God lets us know that creation declares the glory of God (Romans 1:20). Just as the natural things of the Old Testament serve as a types and shadows for us spiritually under the New Covenant, so does nature serve as symbolic expressions of the change that God desires to bring in the lives of His people. As we allow this change to take course, we then become testaments of His life changing power as well. Then, and only then, can we change the world around us. As we allow this change to take place in us, it can resonate and effectuate to the world around us.

Remember, Colossians 1:14-17 (Amplified) puts it this way: 14 In Whom we have our redemption through His blood, [which means] the forgiveness of our sins. 15[Now] He is the exact likeness of the unseen God [the visible representation of the invisible]; He is the Firstborn of all creation. 16For it was in Him that all things were created, in heaven and on earth, things seen and things unseen, whether thrones, dominions, rulers, or authorities; all things were created and exist through Him [by His service, intervention] and in and for Him. 17And He Himself existed before all things, and in Him all things consist (cohere, are held together).

Change not just for the sake of change. Change because you trust the Creator Who set all these things in motion before the foundation of the world.

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