Sometimes things end. The come to a crashing halt. And we’re rarely prepared. Even if we had plenty of warning and time to get ready. Yet with each end comes a new beginning.
When Jesus was hanging on the cross, watching through weary and unfocused eyes as the crowd sneered and mocked. Struggling for his next breath. He purposefully took one last gulp of air and cried out, “Tetelestai!” That word literally means, “It is…finished!” Done. Complete. Ended.
What was done? His suffering? Sure. But so much more. What ended was the Old Testament Law which kept God’s people enslaved and never once changed their hearts. “Christ is the END of the Law, that there may be righteousness for all who BELIEVE”- Romans 10:4. What ended is human striving and good works to try and gain God’s favor. “If you allow yourselves to be circumcised (to become righteous), Christ will be of NO VALUE to you at all”- Galatians 5:2. What ended was religion and people-pleasing and the rule of sin in our lives. And so much more.
And all of this ended so that something new might begin. “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old is passing away. Behold, the new has come!”- 2 Cor. 5:17. God gave his people new hearts. New desires. New power and purpose to live for something greater. New joy, confidence, peace. New eternal destiny. There’s a new connection with the Father in heaven. All of this and more is found by grace through faith in Christ!
But get this- something had to end so that something greater could begin. Religion had to die on the cross so that Christ’s righteousness could live in you and me.
The end of things is never easy. Indeed, the early church dealt for years with people who kept trying to re-impose the Law on believers. Fortunately, God’s Apostles refused to people-please and freedom reigned in the early church!
New beginnings start with endings. What’s ending in your life right now? What might God be doing in the midst of this difficult time? A new understanding of his love and comfort? A new chapter in your life? Understand- you can keep look back at what you lost. Or you can look up in faith and receive what God wants to do in you and- through you- in your world right now.
One more thing- what needs to end in your life right now so that God’s new beginning can start? What do you need to let die so you can experience the fulness of life in Christ? Will you? What’s worth hanging onto if it keeps you from God’s best? Let it go. Walk away. Do it. Now.
In the words of the those great prophets, Boston- “Don’t look back…I can tell, there’s no more time left to criticize. I’ve seen what I could not recognize…everything in my life was leading me on…”