Friday, July 07, 2006

Giving Up so God can Give

This week our old, faithful, hardworking photocopier, that was already reconditioned when it arrived at our office eleven years ago, was supplanted by a newer model.

I'd read the warning signs. Whenever I'd call the service guy in to get the old lady back on her feet when she faltered or went on strike temporarily, he would inevitably ask, "How long have you had it?" Then would follow a caution that sooner or later, the company we leased the copier from (toner and service calls included), would notice the age and increased likelihood of service calls and the very good deal we were getting. They would probably want to up the lease payment to cover the potential cost, "And besides, " Service Guy said, "Copiers have changed a lot in the past decade and you can get a much improved one these days."

So I met with a pleasant young sales rep. who I liked in spite of my innate resistant to new things. He demonstrated that we would actually save money with a newer model from this century. "Yea, yea, yea," I thought to myself, "Well I like our trusty old friend."

I wasn't looking forward to my day being disrupted by "the network" being set up so that all three of our office computers could then print to the new copier, or the tutorial on how to use this newfangled, stylish upstart, intimidated as I was by the digital display screen and numerous buttons. But Tech Support Guy was cheery and efficient, the network was set up in no time and this greenhorn received her initiation.

Something amazing happened with the "test run" from my laptop when Tech Support Guy showed me with one click of the mouse, how the interview forms I print frequently, appeared in the tray out in the hall, printed double sided, collated and stapled together. No more kneeling on the floor surrounded by islands of paper! I was euphoric.

For the rest of the day the poor people who called and asked, "How are you Belinda?" had to listen to me rave about our wonderful new photocopier and all that she could do. I didn't even care that Old Lady Photocopier was still standing out there waiting to be picked up. How quickly my affections had transferred.

It struck me this morning that this is the way I cling to old, non productive behaviour patterns. I am sure that God must long to break me out of the rut, replace them with new and better ways of being - his instruction book is full of good ones, but I am slow to see the gift.

Dysfunctional as some of my ways of being are, they are familiar to me and fit so comfortably. How foolish. How sad too, when people are reluctant to accept the greatest gift of all, eternal life through Jesus Christ. The treasure God wants to give us all is so precious.

Prayer: Lord, I don't want to miss one bit of the new life in Christ that you offer to us all. I want to be open to all that you have, all that you want to teach me. Break the old patterns and replace them with your ways. Please open the eyes of those in my circle of friends and family who may not be seeing right now the gift you offer. Remove the scales from all of our eyes .

Romans 12:1-2 (New International Reader's Version)
New International Reader's Version (NIRV)
Copyright © 1996, 1998 by International Bible Society
Romans 12
Living for God
1Brothers and sisters, God has shown you his mercy. So I am asking you to offer up your bodies to him while you are still alive. Your bodies are a holy sacrifice that is pleasing to God. When you offer your bodies to God, you are worshiping him. 2Don't live any longer the way this world lives. Let your way of thinking be completely changed. Then you will be able to test what God wants for you. And you will agree that what he wants is right. His plan is good and pleasing and perfect.

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