Newness of life
HINTS AND TRACES - Fr. Roy Cimagala (The Freeman) - January 4, 2018 - 12:00am

New year usually goes together with new life. We have to understand what the true meaning of new life is because we just cannot be having a new life every new year.

A year comes and goes. But the newness of life that is meant for us is one that should not come and go, but should remain new all the way to forever. It's a newness that never fades together with the years and with our other earthly and temporal attributes.

The secret is to live our life with God in Christ through the Holy Spirit. The basis for this is found in our Christian faith.In the Book of Revelation, we learn this truth: "He who was seated on the throne said, 'I am making everything new!'"(21,5) We should have no doubt as to where to get this everlasting newness meant for us.

We have to make sure that we take care of our spiritual and moral life since it is through them that we can receive God's grace, the sole principle of eternal newness. Everything else should get its purpose from our life's spiritual and moral dimensions. We have to know what is truly essential in our human affairs and not get confused and lost in the peripherals and incidentals.

We need to deepen our faith in God's love for us, which should be shown in deeds. It's in this way that we can participate inChrist's victory over sin and death with His resurrection to eternal life. That victory will always make us new as St. Paul once affirmed:

"If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has passed away. Behold, all things are made new." (2 Cor 5,17) In another passage, St. Paul said: "For we are buried together with him by baptism into death, that as Christ is risen from the dead by the glory of the Father, so we also may walk in the newness of life." (Rom 6,4)

Again we cannot overemphasize the need for us to be led by our faith rather by any other principle no matter how important and indispensable it also may be. We must understand that the passage of  time and its cyclical character is meant for us to develop and show our faith and love for God who continues to intervene in our life since He is still in the process of creating and redeeming us in time.

Time is meant for the total process of our creation that includes our redemption. Time is not simply some kind of measure or record of what went before and after, and what is now. Time is a gift from God that is connected to His eternity.

We need to be most aware of the purpose of time so that we do not waste it. Time is best used when we correspond to God's continuing work of our creation and redemption. Time is best used when we work for that newness of life that is meant for us by God, when time flows with the eternity of God. That is when time runs on its proper track, not outside it.

In other words, we would be misusing time if we use it outside of our sanctification, of our effort to correspond to God's creative and redemptive work on us.

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