“When you are empty, you crave things. When you are filled with God’s presence, you crave Him.” Pastor David Ireland
The pastor’s words jolted me. For months, an evolution has taken place within my soul where things I’ve desired – and they were not bad – where losing their importance, and like someone having an outer body experience, I felt as if I was watching myself change, but I didn’t completely understand the process. When I heard this statement at church, my eyes were opened.
What is happening to me? Why don’t I care about going on this bucket list trip anymore? Why am I not anxiously awaiting to see Vogue’s September issue? Why has my passion for that brand new Cadillac disappeared?
The spiritual goals always came first in my dreams and aspirations, but the natural desires where always there as well but now they were doing a disappearing act which made me feel as if I was experiencing an identity crisis.
I know as Christians we are supposed to see ourselves through Jesus Christ – our identity is in Him, but let’s be honest, we still continue to identify ourselves through race, ethnicity, gender, socio-economic status, education, where we live, what we have, and what’s in our bank account. When these classifications, though not all bad, compete with our identity in Christ and hinder us from being a reflection of Him, they become an issue.
As I sat in this Saturday night church service and heard these words, I connected the dots and solved the mystery.
My cravings for certain things and experiences in my life always stood just about next to my relationship with God and fulfilling the purposes He has for me life, and a divine realignment was taking place within me. What previously held so much importance, didn’t matter. What previously created so much excitement was now boring. What needed to happen became irrelevant. I felt like King Solomon when he proclaimed in Ecclesiastes, “Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.”
My soul was being emptied of one order to be filled up with a new one.
My constant prayer and cry to God over the past year is that I want to experience a new beginning in my life – a new chapter. Jesus said you can’t put new wine into old wineskins, but new wine must go into new wineskins. I want the new, and this evolution is God preparing for me the new by getting rid of the old.
When God answers our prayers, or starts the process that will eventually lead to the answer, our response has a crucial role. As I notice myself changing, I recognize two reactions that our constantly a choice until I have fully evolved into the new me. The first reaction is to try to reignite the passion I previously had for certain things as someone trying to re-establish a relationship with an ex. A place within you is empty and you are trying to fill it with what is familiar or what you think should be there, and each time I have this response, there is a sense of emptiness that is so loud within me it is almost an audible noise.
The second reaction, and it is the God reaction, is to fill these new unoccupied spaces with Him through prayer, bible study, your calling, and fellowship, and each time this response happens, a new order is being established until it becomes the new you. What should be at the top is at the top. What should be in the middle is in the middle, and what should be at the bottom is at the bottom.
There is an intense struggle between the old and the new. It happens in the human soul and in the world around us. We want change, but we fight against it. It’s the insanity Albert Einstein so rightly defined. I don’t want to live in my insanity anymore. It is desperately time for new beginnings – a new chapter. I crave a new life with God more than anything the old me desired.