Faith and “New Wineskins”

Here we are all experiencing something we never expected. Social distancing, sheltering in place or as our governor chose to rephrase “Stay at home, stay safe”. This is a learning curve for everyone. So as I was pondering these new changes, I came across a familiar scripture in Luke 5: 37-39 And no one puts new wine into old wine skins; or else the new wine will burst the wine skins and be spilled, and the wine skins will be ruined. But new wine skins will be ruined. But new wine must be put into new wine skins, and both are preserved. This is the more familiar part of this passage. However, as I was reading the whole thing more slowly, I looked at the next part: And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for the says, the old is better. Or in the New Living translation say: But no one who drinks the old wine seems to want the new wine. The old is just fine they say. Change has happened. We cannot deny it. We may want life as usual–with our family, our friends our church services; but for now that is over. I believe when this season is over we all will be different. There will be in a sense, no going back to life as normal. We must embrace the new wine for the season. I believe if we are willing, we can begin to develop a taste for whatever “new wine” He has for us.

For me, the “new wine” was how I was meeting with our Life Group ladies. By God’s grace and love we have grown into a loving caring community of women who are inspiring each other to grow in His grace and love. Many live alone like I do, and so in this time of isolation we need connection to the outside world. Which means technology to the rescue, right? Yes and no. I thought–it will be good, we will use Facebook Messenger to do a live interactive chat–but our group is too large to include everyone. My son mentioned a connect solution called Zoom. This is definitely new wine for me. I want the old and familiar!! So two of our gals actually uses Zoom for their business. “It’s easy.” Here are some links. They seemed so intimidating. I kept hearing, it’s easy, its simple. But, somehow my brain just sort of froze. I want the old wine! I had no desire for the new wine. Even grief came into play as I realized how my husband would have figured it out easily. However, because of my love for these ladies, I overcame my frustrations and I tried. It was a mess. All these pop up windows asking for permission to do this, to do that–just started overwhelming me. I shut my computer in frustration. But I had to persevere, because of my loving compassion for these sweet sisters.

I found out that we need others to help us develop our taste for the new wine. By watching my daughter and son use Zoom plus my friends encouragement I tried again. I admit I had to overcome my comfort and confidence in the old wine. I did discover the why it was hard the first time I tried–again user error….I was doing the “wrong” thing. When you feel ignorant it is hard to press on. Please be gentle in helping others try the new wine. Please slow down and walk them through what they need to do. One word from my daughter made it clearer–and my son helped and we moved forward.

Our first time was last night. It was good for our souls. It was easy after I figured out what to do. The youtube tutortials helped. However, the funny part was they timed us out because the “host” did not show up!! I was the host. Who knows what I did wrong!

Anyway, this is the time to seek the Lord for any new wine He may be giving us. He understands if we don’t want the new wine, because we are familiar with the old. God has new things for us. Let us rely on each other, encourage each other and be patient with each other as we try His new wine for this season. Your new wine may not be connection technology, but maybe working from home, or homeschooling your children–or just not being able to go out and about as usual. It’s ok. We will make it through this time. Keep on trusting, and washing your hands!

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