I have never found evidence of the long-sought after fountain of youth, but I do know that Paul wrote to the Ephesians about renewal:
If you have heard Jesus and have been taught by Him according to the truth that is in Him, then you know to take off your former way of life, your crumpled old self—that dark blot of a soul corrupted by deceitful desire and lust— to take a fresh breath and to let God renew your attitude and spirit. Then you are ready to put on your new self, modeled after the very likeness of God: truthful, righteous, and holy. ~Ephesians 2:21-24
Paul says you have the opportunity to get rid of the old, step into a new life, and take a fresh breath of life. Spiritual renewal shapes you into the “likeness of God,” and you begin to realize that you are:
You’re not a crumpled model of this old world; you’ve been freshly fashioned in the likeness of Jesus, and this is why you:
Forget your former way of life, “that dark blot of a soul corrupted by deceitful desire and lust.” Embrace the new you. It’s time to “take a fresh breath and to let God renew your attitude and spirit.”
The Washington Post ran an article titled CRISIS IN CHOCOLATELAND. The article discusses the 5 “power” sectors of the grocery store checkout line. These areas are lined with “grab-and-go items that account for 4% of a stores profit.
Because the checkout process has been sped up. Shoppers are not lingering-longer. The result is the average shopper is not buying as many of the grab-and-go items, and this has decreased the sales of companies like Hershey’s.
Evidently Frank Jimenez, Hershey’s senior director of retail evolution, has been reading the Bible. Some of the comments made by Jimenez sound suspiciously like the temptation of Adam and Eve.
Jimenez uses the “Eight Human Truths of Impulse” to explain why people succumb to checkout-aisle-urges. The goodies can delight, indulge, recharge or “rescue”; they can spoil (“I worked hard today”) or charm (“That’s a great idea”) . . .”
The key metric that determines whether or not a shopper purchases the sweet delight is called “dwell time.” The longer the shopper waits in line and looks at the goodies, the more likely she is to indulge
If you’ve read the story of Adam and Eve, you know that when it comes to temptation, “dwell time” is don’t-do-well-time. The longer Eve dwelled and listened to the sales pitch, the more attractive the forbidden fruit became: She could smell its fragrance and imagine its flavor.
The moral of the story is this: When temptation comes your way, don’t abide—run and hide. Paul stated this moral in these words: “No temptation has come your way that is too hard for flesh and blood to bear. But God can be trusted not to allow you to suffer any temptation beyond your powers of endurance. He will see to it that every temptation has a way out, so that it will never be impossible for you to bear it (I Corinthians 10:13).”
Due to my love of ice cream, I often joke and say I have a body by Braums. I have a particular fondness for their yummy Rocky Road. Because I have trouble controlling my ice cream cravings, I keep very little of it at home.
My craving for ice cream is not hunger related. There are many times that I feel hungry, but I have never felt the pangs of starvation. The hunger I feel is directly connected to the fist sized part of my body that I call my stomach.
Even though the average stomach is just the size of an adult’s clenched fist, it has an above average capacity to influence the behavior of the rest of the body. When a person is really hungry, he wants to eat his food. When a person is starving he may even riot or steal to get food.
When we look at the ministry of Jesus, we find several cases in which he fed the people. One of the more remarkable stories is when He used the bread and fish of the small boy to feed many people.
A key point of this story is that Jesus did not take the bread from the small boy, but the lad gave what he had to Jesus. Even though the little guy had very little himself, he had a craving. His craving was to help others who were hungry.
This young boy gave a swift kick to the can of logic, and showed his faith through his actions. He craved the will of God, and he did what he could do. And God, I think He smiled.
Then, there is you and me. What about us? Will we allow our lives to be controlled by the desires of our belly? Let’s learn from the lad and crave the presence and will of God for our lives.