Journal Mk 2 (all references are from the ESV; changes in punctuation are mine)
Scripture: “No one sews a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment.
If he does, the patch tears away from it, the new from the old, and a worse tear is made.
And no one puts new wine into old wineskins. If he does, the wine will burst the skins—and the wine is destroyed, and so are the skins.
But new wine is for fresh wineskins…” Mark 2:21-22
Observation: New wine—fresh move of the Spirit of God? Sounds right. If that is, then what are old wineskins? And what do I do with New Wine?
Analysis: I think these are a couple verses that fall into the bucket of “If anyone has ears to hear…”
As a new Christian in my teens, I thought I knew what this meant: Old traditions, old organizations, old structures equated with old garments and old wineskins. With the Charismatic movement in full swing, it seemed there was no room for the move of the Spirit.
It was easy to get into a church and blend in…no change wanted or demanded…just say “I believe” and I am in the club.
That was nothing I wanted. If I were to give my life for something, I needed to be “all in.”
“All in” from what was demonstrated to me was: Go to church, give, and witness. If I wanted to really be serious, go to school and get a Reverend in front of my name.
The more I read the Bible, the less those two options were obvious. In fact, neither made sense when I was encountering daily life. Did I want to be a Christian in name only or did I want to be a “Sky Pilot” (as my grandfather called it)?
Neither. I wanted to be committed in being a “boots on the ground”, serious everyday Believer—a person who “studied to show himself approved, rightly handling the Word of Truth”, making headway every day in doing it right, walking worthy of the Gospel, honorable, and humble before his God—public when needed, in secret most times, but certainly walking different than the world around me.
Serious, effervescent, lively, practicing the Gifts, immersing myself in the Word, working to surrender every part of my life as I took strength to do. “Renewing my mind” was at the top of my list.
I think that is what New Wine is about.
Prayer: Lord, older now, but no less serious—at least in my mind. Too somber, though. Too sad for my circumstances; prone to tears in that I still struggle to make an impact on my life.
Maybe the circle of influence that you have decreed is supposed to be small. So be it! I follow you and not my wants and desires.
Make me fulfill your purposes all my days.