On a recent trip to the public library I happened across a book by Stephen King “11/22/63.”
I haven’t read anything by Mr. King recently, but this title 11/22/63 brought back the memory of the day J.F.K. was assassinated on a beautiful fall day in Dallas. It got my attention.
In typical King fashion the story features a plot twist, one man traveling back in time, in an attempt to change history by preventing the assassination of John F Kennedy.
I considered how the major events like these changed our nation and the world. And if it were possible to go back in time in our own lives, preventing some events, allowing others,would it bring better things or worse?
Unfortunately we all know that only happens in Stephen King books and science fiction. Not possible.
Or is it?
You’ve probably heard this phrase used when children play games.
It happens when they make a mistake and demand another turn or chance without waiting for their next turn to come around.
“I want a do-over.”
Or in golf, after a really bad shot you just tee up and swing again like the first one never happened.
One definition reads like this
“A do-over is a chance to do something again if you make a mistake and have the previous attempt not count or be recorded.”
A similar explanation of a do-over is found in Paul’s second letter to the Corinthians.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come”.
2 Corinthians 5:17
This new beginning, replacing the old order of slavery, sin and death with freedom, forgiveness, and life is a central theme in God’s plan to redeem the world.
Wrapped up in this short verse we find the possibility that our mistakes, our previous failed attempts at living life do not have to count against us, the record can be wiped clean, we can be given a new start.
The new it speaks of in 2 Corinthians is not contingent on what we have or have not done in the past.
In fact it is an invitation to live new in spite of all that.
It speaks of better things.
Where our past does not define us.
Where confession, repentance, forgiveness, reconciliation and freedom redefine us.
Where grace and mercy exist in defiance of who and what we may have been.
It is about more than changing the past in hope of a better outcome as the character aspired to do in Mr. Kings book.
It changes us.
And the future of our children, our grandchildren and all who will come after.
The new gives us hope of better days ahead in our time and in the future.
I won’t give away the ending of Mr. Kings book, the result of the efforts to change history and prevent the death of a president. If you feel inclined you can read the book. I will say it surprised me and leave it at that.
But the end of our story if you’ve not yet discovered it, the result of accepting God’s offer for a do-over, becoming a new creation?
This is our story..
“But no matter what comes, we will always taste victory through Him who loved us. For I have every confidence that nothing—not death, life, heavenly messengers, darkspirits, the present, the future, spiritual powers, height, depth, nor any created thing—can come between us and the love of God revealed in the Anointed, Jesus our Lord.
august 16th 2016