No New Ideas

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How is it that all of a sudden old is new? All you have to do is look at the movies that came out in the last couple of years and the ones currently advertised to see that nostalgia is big. We have seen every possible concept from the 80’s made into a movie except for the flowbee and the chia pet. While I won’t cross my fingers on those being made into a movie it is interesting that remakes, sequels, or comic book characters who have been waiting to be made into a movie for decades finally get their chance. Solomon said it best when he said, “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.” Are there any decent new ideas out there? What new concept being written in the last five years will be remade twenty years from now?

We live in a world that is constantly searching for the next new thing but often the most powerful and significant things are old things that have been around since the beginning. The truth is many of the best ideas are old ideas. The best storylines have been told for millenia. What makes a good story hasn’t really changed either. You have some guy going along doing his thing when some sort of tragedy hits. The tension builds. You wonder how it could ever get resolved. Things seem bleak, even impossible. Then through some twist of fate or providence things work out and the tension gets resolved. Life is better than ever and every winds up living happily ever after. It doesn’t matter if it is Transformers, the Terminator, or the Gospel…that’s how good stories are supposed to go.

The importance of narrative/story has grown. We realize that good stories aren’t just in books and don’t just happen to someone else. We are in the middle of a story as well. Our lives are narrative. You see this reflected in everything from psychotherapy to biblical theology. As Christians we know that story is God’s story and it gives us identity and direction. While that is not a new idea, it is a powerful idea. What is more, God is in the business of taking old things and making them new. I like that because we are all growing old and that our lives are on a march toward the grave but God shed new light on that through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. God took and old story and gave it a new twist and out of the tension of sin and death came new life, not just for Jesus but for all who believe. While that story is now 2000 years old it is lived out in our lives in new ways each and every day. Praise God for that!

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