Do you ever miss newness?
Some new moments we can recreate when we get the bug. We can buy a new car or move to a new house. We can enjoy a new outfit or delight in a new flavor. There are much more intense new experiences, though, that are often once in a lifetime.
Topping the list we find the excitement of falling in love with "the one." Remember that excitement? Remember the intensity? Remember the feelings that were awakened? Then came engagement, followed by the wedding. So much newness exists in those first weeks, months, and even years. In fact, it seems that a new experience is always just around the corner. I will admit, that was a beautiful time for me, and there are small moments when it seems a little sad that those days are over.
Then there’s the newness of salvation. I honestly don’t remember much of that newness. I was seven years old. I have full confidence of my salvation, but I cannot tell you much about what happened then. As I watch other new believers in their excitement, I sometimes envy them. I’m still excited about the Lord and awed at the fact that He saved me, but my excitement is different. More established, I would say.
Occasionally, I daydream back to those early days, especially the early days of my romantic relationship with Doug, since I don’t remember much about those early days as a believer. I remember the fun, the excitement, and the romance. I also remember the uncertainty, not about Doug’s feelings for me, but about how our relationship was going to play out. I remember the angst of waiting and working out details. I remember the desire to just be married. To be together. I wanted what I have now.
When that realization hits my daydreams, I suddenly discover that I don’t really miss the new. I am a bit nostalgic over it, but I don’t miss it. Without the years in between the new and now, I would lack so much. I would lack the comfort and stability Doug and I have together. I would lack the delight of those moments when we can make each other laugh with a word or comfort and strengthen one another without a word. I would miss the little phrases and references that Doug pops into a sermon now and then, sometimes completely unintentionally, that leave us both unable to look at each other for fear of exploding into laughter. I would not understand the communication that can pass between us with only a look. There would be no delight in carrying on conversations of quotes that leave our children delightfully confused and bewildered.
It’s even more profound when I contemplate my relationship with Christ. I know that I have barely scratched the surface of wisdom, understanding, and knowledge compared to what is available to me through the Holy Spirit and God’s Word. Yet a wealth of all of these has already piled up as a strong foundation for my spiritual growth, just because of the years that are behind me. The excitement of being a new believer is phenomenal, but the experience of having that newness behind me is invaluable. Journal upon journal upon journal of prayers and devotional observations give credence to that truth.
Missing the newness of things often makes us dissatisfied with where we are. Affairs begin because a spouse feels taken for granted. Distance from Christ happens because we seek to fill the need for excitement with other things and relationships. We jump for the exciting, and in the process we neglect the phenomenal we have right in front of us. We have so much! But as long as so long for the excitement of what once was, our eyes will be closed to the exceeding treasure of what we have.
A treasure that is worth our excitement even now.