Day 1 – New and Renewed

His mercies never end.They are new every morning. (Lam. 3:22–23)

“Do you ever get discouraged in your walk with God?” I asked my good friend Kristin. “Do you ever just get stuck and feel like you’re struggling with the same old things?”

“Sure, I know what you mean. For example, when I got married, I realized how selfish I could be about doing things my way. Now, even after having three kids, I still struggle with being selfish and wanting to put my desires first.”

“It just seems like the more I try to grow, the more I see my sin and the real condition of my heart. It’s disappointing to me.” “But at the same time,” Kristin said, “the fact that you see your sin more clearly shows that you’re growing. It shows that the Holy Spirit is at work in you. And we’re supposed to keep running the race, keep our eyes on the prize. We’re not going to be perfect this side of heaven, but we can be encouraged that Jesus defeated sin for us, and we are made new because of what He did for us. God sees us as spotless and blameless, white as snow, and He is making us holy.”

When we become Christians, we are new creations in Jesus. However, our struggle with sin does not end. We continue to struggle with our sinful desires and with the darkness that sur- rounds us. But we can live in the security God gives us through Christ, knowing that we are no longer slaves to sin—and that when we do sin, His mercy and compassion still cover us. We will experience growing pains as we see the grip of sinful desires on our hearts, minds, bodies, and relationships; but we can rest in the victory of Jesus, who has made us new and brought us into His kingdom forever.

Extract from Journey: Living Life Well, a 365-day devotional for women