There is a scene in Men in Black II where one of the characters has their vehicle transformed from “old and busted” to the “new hotness.” If you have been following God for any amount of time, you’ve likely gotten banged up quite a bit. You’ve no doubt encountered personal struggles that made you question God’s goodness and faithfulness. You’ve probably experienced a degree of rejection and persecution from non-believers. Unfortunately, you’ve also likely experienced rejection and disagreement from within God’s family, the Church. Following God can often feel the opposite of the transformation experienced in Men and Black: we go from being “the new hotness” in our first days following Christ to quickly feeling “old and busted.”
Here’s another example of going from new to old and busted. Take a brand new steel bucket. Its shiny, new, and reliably fulfills its purpose of holding water. The longer the bucket is around, however, the more dents and dings it tends to take. It begins to rust, and may soon even have holes. Not only does it no longer look new, it also no longer fulfills its purpose of holding water. It is officially old and busted. The question before us is: how can we keep from becoming old and busted servants of Christ? How can we keep following Christ without all of the pressures of the world around us causing rust and disintegration?
Checkout these powerful words from the Psalmist: God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling. There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High. God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved; God will help her when morning dawns. The nations rage, the kingdoms totter; he utters his voice, the earth melts. The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. Psalm 46:1-7
So, if we’ve started feeling like the old and busted bucket above, what do we do? First, we hit the pause button. We take a break from the world’s rat race and seek God’s refuge and advice. We make time to connect with God on a deeper level. Here’s a reality in maintenance, life, and faith. Its hard to repair something if that something is constantly in use. Just like you cannot typically fix a motor if its running, you can’t effectively heal and renew a soul that is living 24/7 in this sinful world. You need to take a break and connect with God in prayer, silence, and Scripture. You have to seek refuge in the one who offers healing and renewal. We will all feel old and busted as we navigate life. When we do, may we seek the refuge and healing of our loving and merciful God.