A Better Life

2 Corinthians 3:6

He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

Children can be called Forces of Change. I use that phrase because adults have to adjust their schedules and habits when children come to live in their home. Becoming a parent causes us to take a closer look at ourselves and the decisions we make.

As parents, many of us judge ourselves based on the character of our children. We teach the kids all we can and hope they understand our values. One woman saw my child do something, and then she looked at me and said sarcastically, “I wonder where she learned that.”

Just like our children say and do what we say and do, we should be saying and doing what we learn in our relationship with God. If we allow God to be our teacher, others should be able to see God’s character in our actions and attitudes. Many of us have confidence in our parenting skills, not because we have faith in ourselves, but because we have faith in God and what he can do (and does) in our lives.

In 2 Corinthians, Paul writes about being a competent minister of the new covenant. He understood and was trying to teach others the concept that the rules and regulations of religion is a trap we want to avoid, but the word of God which lives in our hearts is an adventure of glorious freedom.

We relish opportunities to teach our children how to listen to God’s guidance so they’ll fall into the success that God holds for them.

For centuries, parents have wanted a better life for their kids. I want my kids to know the Spirit of God because I want them to have a better life, not just life with all its limitations. A better life comes to those who train themselves to obey God.

A Better Word


Hebrews 12:24 You have come
“to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.”


When Moses led millions of God’s people out of captivity, he led them to a mountain they were warned to stay away from. When Adam was given freedom to do as he pleased in the Garden of Eden, he was given a warning to stay away from a tree.

Jesus was holy when he was walking on the earth, but people were not told to “look and don’t touch”. He said to let the children run up to him. The time of Adam and Moses was a time of warning. But Jesus came to give us love that we can see and feel and experience.

Now that we have Jesus, in whom there is no sin, and we’re headed toward a mountain which is the city of the living God, in which there is no sin, let us remember that we’ve left our old life. We’ve been given a new covenant.

Because of the blood of Jesus, we have a new life to be thankful for. New direction. Instead of hiding from God, we run into his arms.

How can we remind ourselves daily that we don’t have to carry our past around with us? How can we remind ourselves that Jesus wants us to run with him, not drag our feet? How can we remember that God has something better for us?

 

A New Covenant

1 Corinthians 11:25
In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.”

What reminds you of the sacrifice Jesus made for our sin? Do you remember to thank him for his sacrifice when you’re driving? When you’re texting? When you’re watching a movie?
 
No, probably not. We’re supposed to make a point of remembering the blood poured out on the cross for our sin whenever we participate in a communion service. The officiating pastor reminds us why we’re doing what we’re doing. We obey the reminder and recognize that Jesus gave us what no one else could.

But the phrase “whenever you drink it”, has sometimes been changed to “whenever you eat or drink”. My family has a long tradition of praying before a meal. It isn’t about not trusting the meal-makers in the kitchen. It’s about God. We thank him for being active in our lives. We ask God to bless those who prepare the meal. We ask for God’s guidance regarding specific things the family should discuss. And we remember God’s great eternal love for us.
 
Do we remember the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross at every meal? Probably not. If we put a reminder on the table, that might help. For instance, we could place a decorative cross in the middle of the dinner table to remind us of the sacrifice that brought us freedom. I think that change might bring a new perspective to meals. It might change our attitudes and make us a little more grateful.

Have you studied the new covenant God made by sending Jesus to the cross? You should. It will help you have a better understanding of what lengths God would go to in order to bring us back into a good relationship with him.