One of the effects of having strokes or any health crisis is that you quickly realize that the “old” you is gone. It’s a little strange to wake up, in my case, after several weeks in a coma, only to discover I was no longer the Mark I had been before.
At first, I grieved the loss of the old me. I wanted that Mark back so that I could play basketball and do my work and manage my life just as I had before the stroke. I was even a bit angry with God for allowing this to happen to me. After all, I liked riding roller coasters, both literally and figuratively. I liked the normal ups and downs of life.
After my stroke, everything changed and I had to start accepting that change. I had to be willing to let go of the old me and embrace the new me if I wanted to discover my new normal. The most amazing part of all my thinking is that I didn’t have to do any of it alone.
Nearly every relationship I had before the stroke changed in a very positive way. It started with my relationship with God. Once I surrendered the old Mark, God helped me see that He had great plans for the new, improved Mark, at least from His standards.
Letting go of the old me, the illusions I had of who I was and what I needed to be, brought me full circle so that I could become what God wanted me to be. That’s where I am today, learning all I can of the things God wants from me, as He continues to shape my heart and mind.
Let go of the old you. God will give you a whole new life and you won’t ever need to look back.
So now we serve God in a new way with the Spirit, and not in the old way.
Romans 7:6, NCV