THROW IT OUT!

Throw outItalians, particularly those in southern Italy, have a very old tradition which may seem wasteful, destructive and littering to us, but maybe it also has a lesson for us.

Years ago, as midnight on New Year’s Eve approached, the streets were completely empty: no cars, no pedestrians, not even policemen.  Then, at the stroke of midnight, the windows of the houses and apartments would be thrown open, and to the sound of laughter and music, each member of each family would throw out of the windows old crockery, pots, pans and appliances, detested ornaments and even furniture, along with items of clothing and a whole catalogue of personal possessions which reminded them of something in the past year they were determined to erase from their minds.

It was meant to symbolize “letting go” of past unhappiness to prepare for the future. People believed that by throwing old things out they would also banish and forget the bad luck, unhappiness and bad days.  They sought to drive away and eradicate any bad omens and any negative auras that had accumulated, hoping to prevent them from tainting the coming year.  Then they could begin the new year fresh and optimistic, with space for the new things and good fortune in the year that was coming through their doors.

DividerWhile it could be said that a new year is just another day, like any other, it does present an opportunity for us to stocktake; to review the past year, to identify pitfalls and triumphs and to set ideals and plans for the coming year.

For the blood-bought, adopted child of the living God, we recall how the omnipotent, creator God has intervened and undertaken for us, and we praise Him for the abundance of His blessings, even in times of difficulties. Then we look forward in absolute confidence to continue to serve Him throughout the new year and we renew our pledge to follow His will wherever, whenever and in whatever way He leads. 

While we would consider the old Italian custom as wasteful, there are many things in our lives which we would do well to throw out, and indeed the Scriptures command us to do so.

Throw out 1Many times we are told to “put off” various characteristics of our nature and associated activities and 2 Timothy 2:21 gives us a good reason for obedience: “If a man purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and FIT FOR THE MASTER’S USE”

As we begin this new year,
we would do well to again consider words which are familiar to us:

                                              Romans 12:1-2
Throw out 2I beseech you therefore, brethren,
by the mercies of God,
that you present your bodies a living sacrifice,
holy, acceptable to God,
which is your reasonable service.
And do not be conformed to this world,
but be transformed by the renewing of your mind,
that you may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Hebrews 12:1-2
Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us,
and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith,
who for the joy that was set before Him
endured the cross, despising the shame,
and has sat down at the right hand of God.

Proverbs 3:5-7
Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and lean not on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him
and He shall direct your paths.
Do not be wise in your own eyes. Fear the Lord and depart from evil.

My favourite quote, which I have adopted as my motto, was found written in the journal of Jim Elliot, missionary to the Auca Indians a few days before he was killed by those he was trying to reach.

“So live, that when you come to die, you have nothing left to do, but die”

Lord of the years that are left to me,
I give them to Thy hand.
Take me and break me and mould me
To the pattern Thou has planned.

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About meetingintheclouds

I am Cloudwatcher, a 76 year old Christian lady, happily married to a wonderful man for over 50 years. We have five wonderful sons, all with at least one University degree and in top positions in their chosen fields. One son is still single but four have found perfect wives and they have given us five lovely grandchildren. I was born in England and while I'm proud of my English heritage, I am doubly proud to be a true-blue, fair-dinkum Aussie. My husband and I are committed Christians whose first priority is to love and serve our risen Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ. My life story will tell of my journey from abuse to peace. I suffered 22 years of abuse, being constantly told I was totally evil and an ugly freak: no one would ever want me, so I might as well do the world a favour and kill myself.
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16 Responses to THROW IT OUT!

  1. lorischulz says:

    I nominated you for the “One Lovely Blog Award.” God bless, Lori
    http://lorischulz.wordpress.com/2013/01/06/one-lovely-blog-award/

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  2. Wonderful! Angela, I would add, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17). We cannot move forward in our Christian life if we continue to harbor old thoughts. When the aging Joshua and the Israelite crossed the Jordan into the promise land. He warned them to, “Fear the LORD, and serve him with integrity and faithfulness. Get rid of the gods your ancestors served on the other side of the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and serve only the LORD” (Joshua 24:14).

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  3. Debbie says:

    I loved this analogy again, of the Italians throwing things out the window, with abandon. No holding back! Yes, I’m sure I have somethings that I need to give the old heave ho, out you go! :) God bless you and yours and thank you so much for leading us into the new year, going for the goal of living our lives fully for Him!

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    • Deb, I find that the more I throw out, the more He reveals that I need to discard . . . and what a blessing it becomes. Every time we discard something that hinders our relationship, the closer the relationship becomes. He always knows what is best for us.
      We are one day closer to the time there will be NOTHING to mar our relationship, for He will have completed His work in us. Keep looking up . . .

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  4. Rob Barkman says:

    What a blessed attitude to have…. to know that when we are ready to die we have accomplished all that the Lord has given for us to do! By His grace may we all share in that desire and goal for our lives. Thanks for another blessing my friend.

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    • Thanks Rob. Being a blood-bought, adopted child of the living God is the greatest blessing that can ever happen in the life of anyone. There can be no greater privilege – but it brings with it a definite responsibility. We are saved to serve. We are saved to reproduce.

      My second favourite quote is – If there is NO FRUIT in my life, there is no reason for my existence!

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  5. alwayzhis says:

    The Truth! Thank you sister Angela! Blessings to you and your family today and …
    Stephanie

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  6. Pingback: The Read and Share File « The Master's Table

  7. admin says:

    Happy New Year! Leaving all that impedes running after God and following his lead.

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