Lynell Caudillo writes from Calvary Presbyterian:
Stuck in a dead-end job and strapped for money, Kyle MacDonald came up with an improbable plan: starting with one red paperclip, he would trade on the Internet until he exchanged it for a house.
First, he traded the red paperclip for a fish-shaped pen. Next, he traded the pen for a doorknob. He traded the doorknob for a Coleman stove. He traded the Coleman stove for an electric generator. He traded the electric generator for a Budweiser sign and a keg of beer, which he then traded for a snowmobile. Exactly one year and 14 trades later, MacDonald finally reached his goal: he exchanged a part in a Hollywood movie for a home in Saskatchewan, Canada.
The true story of Kyle MacDonald is told in his book, “One Red Paperclip.” Now the book is being made into a movie. Fame, fortune, a book, a movie deal and a home – it all began with one red paperclip.
It sounds pretty crazy, doesn’t it? To think that one fellow took one very common item and created an entire new reality for himself!
The beginning of a new year is often a time when people take stock of their lives, consider where they are and where they’d like to be. Some people make resolutions but all too often those are broken within 24 hours of making them. Discouragement can set in quite easily. So how does one start over or get a new lease on life? Is such a thing possible? (My golfer husband tells me one reason he enjoys the game is that he has 18 opportunities to start over!)
The God of the Bible is into re-creation and new beginnings. God wants to give each and every one of us a fresh start in this new year. Well aware that we have messed up, the most incredible good news is that we can start the year with a fresh slate. How good is that?
God will give you a new song to sing and a new heart, and God will put a new spirit in you (Ezekiel 36:26). In fact, “…anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun” (2 Corinthians 5:17).
Just like that single red paper clip represented a new beginning, taking one small step of faith is the start of a new life in Christ and a total new beginning.
The reason Christ came in the first place was to demonstrate God’s amazing, unconditional love for us.
“Since we believe that Christ died for all, we also believe that we have all died to our old life. Christ died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them” (2 Corinthians 5:14-15).
This is why we can have a new beginning and a fresh start. All our “mess ups” reset. We can begin again, not just at the start of the year, but at the start of every day of the year. Why? Because “God’s mercies begin afresh each morning,” so great is God’s faithful love for you and me (Lamentations 3:22-23).
So how ‘bout it? A red paper clip in exchange for a house, or my old way of being for becoming a new creation? Don’t know about you, but I’m ready for a fresh start.