Remember when a flat screen TV was a great new invention? Or when cell phones first be-came affordable? Go back further. Imagine what pioneers would have given for a ticket on an American Airlines flight.
What was once new and “cutting edge” rarely stays that way. No one dusts off the covered wagon to drive on a freeway. Your first cell phone may have been great, but would you want to still be using it?
No — because in life, we upgrade from “new” to “newer.”
The same is true in our relationship with God. While he is unchanging in His true nature, we are constantly coming into new revelations of who He is for us. What rocked our world 10 years ago, should have become part of who we are with God today. When I hear folks whose most current story about God is a decade old, it is a sign to encourage them: “It’s time for an upgrade friend!”
It’s great to be excited when we hear a new truth about God, but for it to become our reality, we need a newer mindset to go with it. As Graham has wisely said many times, “We can’t want new, but think old.” (from Radical Perceptions #22)
One encounter many years ago still highlights this truth for me. I had always believed that Jesus loved me. It was something I knew. But I remember the day it became newer. I had been ministering in women’s prisons for about a year and was continuously, wonderfully overwhelmed by the power of the love of God as I prayed with the inmates during our ministry times. It was like someone tangibly turned on a flood of grace and love that rushed through me. I simply loved how He loved them.
On the long drive home one night, God asked me a question; one that I suspect He had been planning during that entire first year of outrageous grace:
“You do know that I love you like that too.”
It stunned me. The proper automatic answer was “yes”… but then I realized: “No, I didn’t.”
I had a lot of knowledge about God’s love and authentic stories of experiencing it. But my encounters in prison had been an encounter with His love at an entirely new level. I had known He loved me — but I didn’t know He loved me like that.
And He knew that I didn’t know, so He kindly let me experience it again and again until He could give me a newer revelation of His love. (There’s a reason I fondly call Him “Jehovah Sneaky”.)
Our revelations and experiences of God can be absolutely real. We can know for a fact about the true aspects of His nature. But if we take those mindsets and set them in stone, then we can miss a newer, higher, more brilliant experience of Christ that He has for us.
So what aspect of the Mind of Christ that was once new for you is due for a newer revelation? Ask Him. He would adore showing you the upgrade on offer.