Our Desire for a Fresh Start

For many, the New Year celebration taps into the yearning we have all experienced for a new, or fresh, start–the desire to leave some things in life behind and to move forward with a renewed sense of purpose and hope.   As a matter of fact, one of the great blessings that we have from our relationship with Christ is the ability to experience a fresh start on a regular–even daily–basis.



This reality is depicted in a powerful way through the symbol of footwashing–a customary practice in Jesus’s day when, as people went about their daily activities, their sandaled feet were exposed to the dirt and filth of unpaved streets and roads.  The need to wash feet in certain situations such as a formal meal was obvious.



When Jesus washed the disciples’ feet during the Passover meal, his primary purpose was to illustrate the principle of servant leadership.  Jesus act of humility also signified the spiritual cleansing that we experience as Christians–part of the sanctification process.



To clarify, as you and I go through life, the world tends to rub off on us.  We accumulate “baggage” in the form of “fleshly filth”.  Thankfully, through the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives, we can experience relief from this burden.  Just as Jesus washed the physical dirt from the disciples’ feet, his shed blood constantly cleanses us from all sin:



If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.   (1 Jn. 1:9)



Frankly, apart from this process, it is impossible to have a close, intimate relationship with Jesus Christ.  Thankfully, Jesus is able to remove all the barriers that stand in the way of our relationship with him–and he offers to do this on a constant, daily basis.



This means that we as Christians don’t need to be captives to our past mistakes and failures by making it possible for every day to be a new and fresh start in our lives.  What we can experience on a daily basis is similar to the words of Isaiah that describe a future repentant Israel:



Then your light will appear like the dawn and your recovery will come quickly.  Your righteousness will go before you, and Lord’s glory will be your rear guard.  (Isa. 58:8)



For us, restoration is a regular theme in the Word of God as expressed in my Life Essentials Study Bible, Principle #14, page 607 in Ezra:



If we are violating God’s will, we should confess our sins and once again walk in fellowship with God and one another.



Praise God that the promise of a new and fresh start is so readily available to all who trust in Him!

Life Essentials Study Bible

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