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Renewal, begins with the truth

We long for renewal, just like the sunrise on an autumn day. Humans are designed for a change of season, a new beginning, and the assurance of a blank white page. I am known for my Christmas tree decorations disappearing on Boxing Day. I always unpack my suitcase as soon as I arrive home from travel.

Yet somehow, a little row of decorations I hung in our lounge room for my son’s birthday three months ago are still waving in the wind as I write today. Something about this row of colour reminds me of the promise of renewal; I want to see the celebration linger a little longer. Reminding myself that although darkness can feel like it lasts a lifetime, we are promised to live in joy and find strength in the rhythm and rituals of new life.

This Passion Week (journey across Easter) reminds us that as the dust becomes dust, there is a Genesis week of redemption when the promise of resurrection brings new life again. We hope that when we acknowledge that where there is brokenness, new life is waiting. Where there is loss, grief and despair, there is also life, celebration and resilience.

There are three moments of cleansing in Psalm that promise mercy amid brokenness.

Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
And cleanse me from my sin.

Psalm 51:2

Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Psalm 51:7

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.

Psalm 51:10

A fresh reset is the longing of our hearts to feel the cleansing of the dust and mire from everyday life—that moment when a fresh shower hits differently, when we have worked in the garden. This journey begins with an honest reflection and acknowledgement of the truth.

Are you longing for this cleansing that brings the lightness of surrender?

Can you take a moment to ask God for your cleansing, your own need for renewal?

It is so easy to face the crowd and point out the decay and sin in the people we walk alongside. It is easy to shout at the man in the arena, the congregations who have gotten it so wrong. We live in a world of retributive justice. Where we become the crowd, shouting at the death of Christ as we shout at the church collectively.

What about the renewal that is needed every day?

What is our own part to play in the rituals that don’t bring the truth into its right place?

A broken reminder that we each fall short in our daily lives. A reminder that Christ wants to bring resurrection to every part of our broken worlds. Tolkien describes the mercy that Psalm 51 draws us to enter communion with.

Paul in Ephesians describes it this way.

“He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish”

Ephesians 5: 26-27

It is a cleansing time for us all. It begins with our own time of beginning again. Being honest with the ways we have fallen short and need to bring a simplicity of complicity to the fore.

Join me as I continue to reflect and write from these Psalms with the following themes that the writer prophetically speaks about in our current days.  These include Repentance, Honesty, Faith in Jesus’ Atonement, the power of the Holy Spirit, Service to one another, Gratitude, and Friendship with Jesus.

Comment at the top of this blog with your thoughts on mercy, justice and the promise of the renewal we all long for.

Today I will say on repeat, let it become my broken hallelujah …Create in me a clean heart, oh lord and renew in me a steadfast spirit.

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