“If I could just start fresh, things would be different!”
We think a fresh start will change things, so we change houses, jobs, locations and even spouses trying to get that fresh start. But we don’t need a fresh start that changes where we are and what we have. We need a fresh start that changes who we are and what has us.
Genesis chapters nine and ten are about a failed fresh start. In these chapters, we find the great flood has receded, Noah and his family have come out of the ark, and God has given them a fresh start in a brand new world.
But that fresh start doesn’t last. Noah winds up in a drunken, naked stupor. We don’t know the details, but we do know that one of Noah’s sons (Ham) walks in on Noah inappropriately. As a result, Noah proclaims that Ham’s descendants will serve the descendants of his siblings. So much for a fresh start!
Their fresh start went south because new surroundings will not override old hearts. Since the Garden of Eden, man’s heart has pulled away from God like a car that needs a front end alignment. And left unchecked, our sin will pull us off into a very bad ditch.
What we need is not new surroundings but a new heart, and a new heart is not something we can create. According to Ezekiel 36:26, God must give us a new heart.
Where in your life do you wish you had a fresh start? Could it be that instead of a fresh start, you need a fresh heart?
Bret Legg is the Teaching and Counseling Pastor at Warren Baptist Church in Augusta, GA.