By Goldie ChongAfter celebrating New Year, we also celebrate Chinese New Year which in China is also called Spring Festival on 25 January. Traditionally the Chinese will do spring cleaning before Spring Festival to signify removing the old and welcoming the new. Our daughter who came from China to celebrate with us in Perth helped us to clean out our cupboards, storerooms, shed, etc. getting rid of stuff that we haven’t cleared for years.
What a relief to see how much space we now have to put in better stuff!
Clearing my own life, I asked God to show me what old stuff I should get rid of so that I can put in better stuff for this new year.
The Holy Spirit revealed some amazing old stuff: I have been trying to please God by obeying Him (didn’t Jesus say, “if you love me keep my commandments”?). I realized I have been trying to please God by my obedience and good works.
But in fact, God is more concerned about my relationship with Him.
The story of the prodigal son illustrates the heart of God: the returning son came to his father with a prepared speech, offering a series of good efforts to be a servant but the father cut short his speech. He offered his unconditional love. I imagine father saying, “No son, just love me as I love you. My love will make you want to serve me .”
The new mindset I need is to get close to my Father and feel His amazing love for me.
Yes, God wants me just to love Him.
So, my desire for this new year is to strengthen my relationship with Him, to get close to Him and understand more of His unfathomable love.
He wants me to become intimate with Him, spend time with Him, listen to Him, talk to Him, enjoy Him, become best friends with Him … and then obedience will naturally follow.