Truly Re-Born?

When the words and/or phrase “re-born” are/is uttered it’s generally a reference to a person’s decision to accept Christ as their savior, but for me it has a further and more complicated meaning. In my “Nothing” notebook, two and a half years ago I asked two simple questions. “Are we truly re-born in a truly new spirit and life, or are we just slightly re-furbished versions of the old? Have we been willing to let God totally remake us exactly the way He wants us or do we put certain parts in a lockbox that we will not open to Him?”
Toward the end of George’s sophomore year in college he turned his share of our life over to Christ in the middle of the morning one morning on the invitation of a couple who worked for Campus Crusade for Christ. He then proceeded to put virtually all of what was our combined spirits in a lockbox which he would not open to God or anyone else for many years. The reasons for that are not easily understood and therefore not easily explained. The root reason, I believe, was an extremely limited understanding of what Jesus taught. The years of Sunday school and church had done little to expand knowledge or comprehension. We went to services on Sunday morning simply because that’s what people like our family did.
I don’t remember if there was a specific expectation that since our life had been turned over to Christ that God would see to it that George miraculously aced his finals that quarter, but it had to have been an unspoken hope. When that hope was dashed what followed was apparently a sense that “Well, that didn’t work, so what’s the point? I did my share but God didn’t bother to keep His end of the bargain.” We then entered an extended period of God and Jesus avoidance, except in dire circumstances of emotional pain and suffering, before any degree of understanding or a relationship with God and Christ would be achieved. To be certain, there was no “re-birth” within our joint soul.
Of the things I’m certain, there is one which evolved from that period of our life. When you actively and sincerely turn your life over to Christ, as George did, God takes you at your word and will use whatever means and time He deems necessary to hold you to your commitment. What I eventually came to realize is that I had been using the terms “turn my life over to Christ” and “being re-born” interchangeably and that was wrong. When George turned our life over to Christ, it was merely the beginning of a “re-gestation” period necessary before a genuine “re-birth” could occur.
The answers then to the questions at the beginning of this blog entry are this: No, we were not truly re-born in a truly new spirit and life. Yes, we were just slightly refurbished versions of the old. No we had not been willing to let God re-make us exactly the way He wanted us, and yes we, more specifically George, did put certain parts which included me, in a lockbox which he refused to open to God for a very long time.

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