Last year, our theme was Wholeness in Christ. To encounter deeper wholeness required going into our brokenness—which we did throughout the year and shared about through our content and talks in 2023. Getting to do more live events and talks was both personally scary at moments (due to the speaking phobia I’ve been overcoming) and exhilarating, because the response was phenomenal. We could see in-real-life (which doesn’t happen much with a virtual ministry) how our own stories of brokenness and sharing on Catholic teachings on the meaning of and our approach suffering not only resonates with people, but is so necessary amidst such hardships.
I used to think that going into my brokenness, and exposing my pain would then make it envelop me even more. That I would become more depressed, anxious, and the suffering would take a deeper hold. But that’s a lie, and it’s time to debunk that. Pain that remains unexpressed, buried, hidden cannot come into the light of Christ where healing and wholeness are found. And it is precisely there, in His light, where our brokenness can be restored because Christ makes all things new.
That brings us to what the Holy Spirit gave me to present to my team and now you concerning our vision as we begin the fourth year of our restoration ministry, our theme for 2024: He makes all things new. It is rooted in Revelations 21:5.
And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”Rev 21:5
This is the only passage in the entire book of Revelations where God Himself speaks. In doing so, God renews the old promises to make His dwelling with them, and He will be their God and they will be His people. (Lev 26:11-12; Ez 37:27). This was God’s original plan—Genesis—before The Fall. He’s always wanted us to be His, but due to the effects of Original Sin, He sent His Son to atone on our behalf. This work of Christ is always available to us, to make things new in and through Himself.
In the original Greek, the term used here for “new,” kainos (kahee-nos’), means newness in kind, of superior quality. It also means “fresh,” “different in essence” in respect to a form or substance. With our humanity redeemed, creation must be renewed in order to follow suit (see Isaiah 65:17-25). The vision of the Heavenly Jerusalem—the place where we will dwell with God—is presented to John as a perfect physical structure built out of precious materials. Adam’s work of making the earth fit for heaven has been fulfilled by Jesus, the Second Adam. (Source).
Reading the context of this passage, Revelations 21:1-5 tells us that the former heaven and earth will pass away, and the sea will be no more. The use of Armageddon terms leads us to think that St. John is writing about the physical end of world, but not so. “The removal of sea and night symbolize the removal of all chaos, fear, and evil” (Source). And the imagery of the destruction of the present earth and heavens to make way for the “new heavens and a new earth” (2 Pet 3:13) reveal the end of the “world” as the Jews knew it. It dissolves the world view of the Old Covenant Temple which is now superseded by Jesus, the High Priest of the New Covenant. (Source)
This also serves as a fulfillment of the prophecy according to Isaiah:
Remember not the former things,Is 43:18-21
nor consider the things of old.
Behold, I am doing a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness
and rivers in the desert.
The New Jerusalem that comes from Heaven is prepared as bride adorned for husband. This symbolizes the union of the faithful with the Lord, because now we are the New Jerusalem (Heb 12:22-23) the city of the Living God. (Source)
This is when God, the Alpha and Omega (1:8) who makes all things new, will have completed His work, restoring His children back to what He always intended in a perfect covenant of love (ref Isaiah 62:1-5; Hosea 2:18-20).
We will witness the glory of God: God’s presence, filling the Church, transfigures her (Jerome Commentary).
To close, I will leave you with another key Scripture that also utilizes kainos “new” that we will hold onto this year:
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”2 Cor 5:17
In Christ, we become a new creation.
What does the Lord desire that you see made new in your life?