|Create Date||April 8, 2019|
|Last Updated||April 8, 2019|
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WE HAVE A NEW BEGINNING
A mulligan Read Isaiah 43:16-19
“A mulligan is a second chance to perform an action—usually after the first chance went wrong through bad luck or a blunder.” First used in non-professional golf.
How many times have you wanted to have another chance? ME music concert/exam. You? Another chance to say, “I love you”? To say something over again a better way? To do that exam again?
Perhaps you wish you’d chosen a different career. Maybe you can think of a time you overreacted to your spouse or child and wish you could take it back and start over. Perhaps you think your entire life needs a mulligan—you’ve made so many mistakes, the only hope is to start over.
- Do you spend more time in yesterday, today or in the future?
But God is offering us a new day every day. God is recreating all the time Have you ever wanted to cry “Mulligan” with God? Have you ever said, “Lord, just give me a second chance, or another chance”? “Lord, can I just start over?” Can I believe what the prophet Isaiah said and have God start a new thing? I’m guessing many of us have.
Have you ever heard someone say they aren’t good enough for God? They say that their life is too full of sin for God to want them. They believe they have surpassed God’s willingness or ability to forgive—he has no more grace for them. Perhaps you’ve felt that way a time or two in your own life.
- 2. What does dwelling in the past achieve?
Moses; Samson; Jonah; Peter; Paul – these biblical characters all “blew it”.
- Sometimes what we want to take back are sins
- Sometimes they are mistakes
- Sometimes they are omissions
Sometimes we let these thing—mistakes, sins, omissions—become so big in our mind that we start to believe they affect how God looks at us. We start to believe the lies that we aren’t good enough, that we committed that particular sin too many times, that we will never learn, that God can’t love someone like us.
DO YOU THINK THAT YOU HAVE USED UP ALL OF YOUR CREDITS WITH GOD? THEY HAVE RUN OUT?
God does not call you his beloved because of anything you did, do today or will do. He calls you his beloved because of who he is.
With God we don’t need mulligans or do-overs because of who God is.
It’s easy to think we aren’t good enough, we aren’t studying or praying enough, we aren’t giving enough, we can find all kinds of things that make us feel we aren’t right with God and we feel the need to ask for a mulligan or a do-over so we can get right with God. When we feel this way, however, we need to recognize that our feelings are lying to us – especially when it comes to our relationship with God.
Read Isaiah 43:18-19
Our forefathers were a nation of sinners, whiners and complainers—and God remained faithful to them.
When he led them out of Egypt, he gave them a new beginning. Isaiah says; “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. I am doing a new thing.” Isaiah is not telling them to forget the Exodus—he is reminding them of it! They are to remember that God makes new beginnings, and this is what they need in Isaiah’s day. Forget about how deeply you have sunk into sin—God will renew you now, just as he did before.
The prophet Isaiah speaks of this faithfulness
|On our own, we will never be good enough for God—and he doesn’t expect us to be, because he is good enough for us. Our past, our sins, our rebellion is not, and never can be, more powerful than God’s grace.|
- Is there something holding YOU back from moving on?
We don’t need a do-over with God because he’s already given us the ultimate do-over in Christ. We don’t need to call a mulligan because he doesn’t hold our sins against us. God, through Jesus Christ, gave us the perfect mulligan, the perfect do-over. He gave us a new beginning, the old is not counted against us—we are a new creation.
It’s been said, yesterday is gone, tomorrow is not promised, you just have today. Right here and right now, is what matters in your relationship with God.
|Take some time this week and pray about the things you have felt are holding you back from a right relationship with God. Then ask him to help you remember that his grace is always bigger than our sins. Ask God to help you stop focusing on the past and stop worrying about the future—ask him to help you see him today. Surrender all to him—the good, the bad, the ugly, the things that can break us and the things that can make us—and live in his goodness, dwell in his righteousness. You are a new creation in him—do you not perceive it?|
LIVE IN THE PRESENT
Read Isaiah 43:19-21
Isaiah – the ultimate poet - visits the theme, that while we are perhaps horrified or distressed about the past and ALL OUR MISTAKES OR OMISSIONS - our circumstances – God never leaves us alone.
Remember the picture of the Father looking out for his Prodigal son LONGING for him to come home?
This younger son was distressed! He turned back home – really because there was nowhere else to go. (There was a famine!) But when he made his move, his father was waiting We don’t know what the son did after the party. Did he wake up early the next morning and start to pitch in? Will he find ways to show gratitude to the father? HAS HIS FATHER’S GRACE CHANGED HIM?
We don’t know what the elder son did either. Did he go to the party? Did he have a change of heart? Can he welcome his brother home and work side by side with him? HAS HIS FATHER’S GRACE CHANGED HIM?
But one thing is for sure, their lives would never be the same again
Our physical limitations/needs must be replenished. But we have spiritual deficiencies – Spiritual lack/faults/shortcomings within us. We experience moments that seem depleted of love. It’s like the love has run down. Faith and joy are eaten up in the trials of the day. Sometimes we have no energy. We end up not trusting so much, hope is dashed, or our finances are troubling us.
We NEED GOD TO REFRESH US!
- What do the words, “See, I am doing a new thing” mean to you? What new things do you see in your life?
WE KNOW THAT GOD IS EXTRAVAGANT. We know he has what we need When we walk through desert places – we can remember that God’s refreshment is not far away. God WILL make a way. Troubled dry desert times wreak havoc with our emotions, reasoning, stress our relationships and cause us to doubt. We can even doubt God. I have.
You see the wilderness is not necessarily a place but ANY EXPERIENCE IN LIFE THAT CAUSES US TO LOSE SIGHT OF GOD. Has that happened to you? It has to me. But God is the source of our strength and hope. This is why we come back to “church” (care groups – gathering together) to listen to god’s word. To revisit the promises.
Isaiah the prophet reminds us – God will make a way for us to push through
This is grace; This is enough; SO, LIVED SAVED