Friday, December 26, 2014

 New Things by Jim Hart

We like new things. Mostly. As a musician there's a certain fascination with certain vintage instruments. I buy a new computer to digitally record my songs, and then try various tricks and software to obtain a vintage sound. It's a shifting paradigm. We like new, but still maintain a connection to the old.

Many of us see the New Year as a mark in time to start over again. New resolutions vs. old habits. New goals that are not that dissimilar to the goals of the previous year. Most of our new goals and resolutions for 2015 contain pieces of the things that we didn't complete in 2014.

As an introvert, according to Myers-Briggs, I get excited about starting a new project. But sometimes that excitement begins to fade, and a new idea presents itself and the old project, even if it's nearing completion, is paused. And the new thing is begun with new fervor! Even though I know that's not always the most productive way to get things done. The incomplete pile grows and grows. And now the old things of 2014 are about to make way for the new stuff of 2015.

Part of my personal goal setting process includes keeping several small notebooks that are titled with specific project ideas. When new inspiration bursts onto my horizon while I'm working on another project, I stop long enough to write down the new idea in the appropriate notebook. And I use a simple note taking app on my tablet for the same purpose. I can revisit those ideas at a later date.

In 2015 let's take out something old and make it new. Open up that file and bring out that unfinished project - a poem, a novel, an outline, a blog - and finish it. If the squirrel of a new notion should scamper into view, jot it down, and return to work on finishing what you've begun.

When I sign a new author client I ask them "what else you got?" For one of my clients a previous manuscript that they hadn't done anything with is the manuscript that got them their first publishing contract.

Our Father in heaven excels in making old things new. Most of us are familiar with the promise in 2 Corinthians 5:17. "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come." He is able to take our old unfinished life, and make it new.

In Jeremiah 18 the prophet writes "I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was working at his wheel. And the vessel he was making of clay was spoiled in the potter’s hand, and he reworked it into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to do." This is a wonderful picture of God's sovereign prerogative to recreate the old into something new. Jesus has promised that He will finish the work that He started in your life. (Philippians 1:6)

In 2015 keep your life - all of your goals and dreams - in the hands of the Potter. Remember that the Faithful One is still forming us into the vessel that best suites His wonderful purpose. And then, as He works on you, reach deep into your drawer of incomplete projects and ask Him to help breathe new life into one of them.


Terri Tiffany said...

You have motivated me to pull up a few old ones.

Davalyn Spencer said...

Praise God for His ability to make new from old!

Beth Ziarnik said...

Good reminder, Jim. I'm endeavoring to keep my hopes and dreams for 2015 in the Potter's hands, just as you said. Thank you!