All Things New: A Reflection

During this season of Easter, the readings in the Divine Office have been taken from the book of Revelation. There is one passage that has particularly grabbed my heart and offered much fruitful meditation and consolation. Revelation 21 speaks powerfully of the “new heaven” and the “new earth,” and how God himself will come to his people to “wipe away every tear from their eyes.” Then verse five invites us to take in the re-creation, as the One on the throne says: “Behold, I make all things new.”

Do you feel the invitation to inhale this truth deeply and exhale peacefully when you read those words?

I do. I so often need to remember this truth and allow it to sink into my heart. I have brokenness, and I have loved ones with brokenness. I regularly experience the consequences of brokenness, and I have felt sorrow for all that needs to be made right. We all daily experience the reality that there is much wrong with the world. And how do we respond? We sometimes distract ourselves. We sometimes are paralyzed with grief. We sometimes bravely move forward on our pilgrim journey with great faith, despite the dismal circumstances that result from our fallen humanity. 

Whatever our response has been to the brokenness in our world, we need to inhale deeply of the truth that our Lord is the one on the throne making all things new. This is no greeting card sentiment; this is a promise that will be fulfilled.

Our God sits on the throne and is in the process of making all things new: in my life, in your life, and in all of the world. We do not see clearly how now, but we are assured of what we hope for and given evidence of things unseen (Hebrews 11:1). With that in mind, I offer the following reflection exercise that you can take with you into your quiet prayer time with the Lord:

  • Quiet your heart as you enter His presence. He is there already, waiting for you, in the space of your Interior Castle. 
  • Be conscious that you are bringing your heavy burdens with you—every one of them. Perhaps, imagine them strapped to your shoulders like a large hiking pack. 
  • Imagine the glorious light of God’s presence ahead of you. Look forward and see our Lord on the throne, in all His glory and goodness.
  • Take Him in. Take in the glory of His presence and the truth of His sovereignty over all the world. Spend a few moments with this vision and worship Him for who He is. 
  • Then, take off that heavy pack of burdens and set it at your side.
  • Open the top and take out the first broken thing you see. Walk with it toward that glorious throne and leave it at His feet. As you release it, pray over it by name, and ask our Lord to make it new.
  • One by one, take out each broken thing you have carried. Walk each one to the feet of Jesus. Ask Him to make each one new.
  • When you are finished, when you have emptied your pack of all your brokenness and all the brokenness of others you love, take in the sight before you. See all that you have carried at the feet of the King. See these things in their redeemed state; see them in the light of His promise to “make all things new.” And worship Him again for His faithfulness.
  • As you leave this time of prayer and worship, know that His presence stays with you and your burdens of brokenness stay at the foot of the throne. They are being made new. You are being made new. 

Go out in joy and peace, giving thanks to God. Alleluia!

Revelation 21:5

Copyright 2019 Jessica Ptomey

Because He Lives

For the last several days, and especially on this eve of Easter, I have been reflecting on the significance of tomorrow. As we end our fasting, eat good food, and gather eggs, we can celebrate without giving enough thought to why we are celebrating. Or perhaps we think about it, but the way that we live poorly reflects what Easter means for our lives. If you are a Christian, then you must realize that Easter has changed the trajectory of our lives’ for eternity. Easter is everything.

Matt Maher’s song, Because He Lives (Amen), convey’s this truth so powerfully:

“Amen, Amen. I’m alive, I’m alive, because he lives…let my song join the one that never ends.”

Are we singing along with the unending chorus? Are we living to the tune of eternity? Because Jesus lives everything is different — everything. Every pain is comforted; every hope is realized. We were dead; now we are alive. Are we living fully alive? We were filled with fear; now Peace himself is here to dwell in us. Are we at peace? Our cause for despair is, in the light of his resurrection, now reason to hope. Do we exude hope in this world? Continue reading “Because He Lives”

Thankful…for Hope

thankful-for-hope

Yesterday was one of those days. I was struggling with parenting bad behaving toddlers, dealing with some stressful and emotionally challenging issues, and then to top it all off, my 16-month-old pulls a hot cup of tea off the counter and onto his chest. I raced to pull his clothes off, soak his burned skin in cold water, and call the pediatrician. Continue reading “Thankful…for Hope”