I got to the airport and started eating: sandwiches, salad with lots of spicy dressing, sourdough bread, cookies, carbonated grapefruit juice and coffee. I didn’t even get to the sidewalk in front of my house before I threw up — yep, right in the middle of the street! There’s a verse that says we’re to “purge out the old leaven” but I don’t think that’s what it was talking about. So….
I looked it up. First Corinthians 5:7 “Purge out therefore the old …leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us.” Then verse 8 fit perfectly for this New Year’s Day, “Therefore let us keep the feast [New Year’s], not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.”
The Lord will always keep us honest with ourselves and others, if we let Him. We stockpile too much filth in the brain and need a good purge every so often. I do an exercise at the end of each year for just this purpose. It clears me up so I can start the year clean, fresh and new. It’s a great brain cleanse!
Step 1 – Make a list of every grief, major and minor, caused by others to me.
Step 2 – Add to the list any lingering ones from the past.
Step 3 – Go through the list and categorize it. Some of my categories this year were: people not telling the truth, people trying to make others look bad, people not receiving help when it was offered, people ignoring my desires, people not standing up for themselves, or God or the truth.
Step 4 – (And this one is the real kicker!) Look at each category and ask yourself, “Have I acted this way toward the Lord?”
When I had to admit the answer was “Yes” every time, I knew I was an even bigger sinner than those I was mad at. I know that God forgives me so I have no right to withhold forgiveness. I don’t have a right to think I am any better than anyone on my list. It is much easier to forgive when I know what the Lord has forgiven me for!
In Matthew 18 the man who was forgiven wasn’t willing to forgive, resulting in his being tormented until he paid all. Doing the exercise now, will set us free from emotional and mental torment quickly. We all will be required to forgive one day so we might as well do it now and be free to start this New Year clean and clear, right?
We tend to forget some of the important things that went on in the past year. Keeping a separate calendar, not for appointments and birthdays, but to record important personal evens as they happen, has really helped me. I record mental, emotional and spiritual events. Then at the end of the year I can easily see where I’ve been. Maybe you’ll want to do this for 2014. Enjoy a great start to the year.
My book, WINGS: A Journey in Faith is a great spiritual booster. You can get it from Amazon in paperback form or as an e-book to download on just about any device.