The great psalm of Vespers on Saturday, begins with a poetic rendition of Genesis, which is recited at sundown, the beginning of a new day. (Ps. 104:29) "You hide Your face, they are troubled; You take away their breath, they die and return to their dust." (30) "You send forth Your Spirit, they are created; and You renew the face of the earth."
Another of my favorite verses comes from (Revelation, 21:5 )"Then He who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new," (Scripture references are taken from: The Orthodox Study Bible)
We are designed for change, and renewal, from Genesis to Revelation, this is the plan revealed by our Creator. Renewal is who we are and what we are made of. As we enter this life, our body is designed to replace it's "old cells" renewing our physical composition with "new cells." We are Baptised, putting on the "new man," having "newness of Life" in Christ, which is our renewal, and a prelude to the resurrection of our body at Christ's second coming. (Col:3:10) "and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created Him," (our goal is to become like Christ). We constantly are striving to renew our spiritual selves to that Baptismal state, by God's grace.
Almost everything eventually grows old and tired and needs to be "renewed." Mandated by law are renewals, for example: of your license and registration, if you drive a car. Insurance policies, bank CD's, licenses of all type, which have expiration dates, require renewal. If you are a homeowner, then you know that items like smoke detector's/CO's and the like, require renewal, as required by law due to code modifications.
Essentials such as: tired sneakers, faded wallpaper, and many other items which become worn or torn, eventually reach a point where they must be renewed.
The renewal of marriage vows has become popular after sharing many years, and as well, there are renewals of oaths and made after elections, as one term ends and another begins. There is the renewal of a promise made, or commitment, for whatever reason...
All life requires renewal. We are renewed, sustained and rejuvenated in many ways. We seek to be replugged, and being aware of our need to be renewed, it is a decision that we must make for ourselves and our circumstances. After a good night's rest, or a good meal, a brisk walk, or an encounter with someone we love, we feel renewed.
Taken from Isaiah 40:31 "But those who wait on God shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not hunger." (41) "Be renewed before Me"
Orthodox Christians each year enter into a time of spiritual renewal. A time to refocus, slowing down our lives in prepartion to grow spiritualy and encounter the Living God. We travel with Him down the road of His life, experience His plan of Salvation through the cross, and profess belief in His glorious Resurrection. We are "renewed" by Him as we participate in the feastday, "Pascha," and encounter the fire of His love, and His desire "To Make All Things New." It is an enactment and Renewal of our Baptism, our "putting on Christ," now, and for all eternity.
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