Something to think about.
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17
This verse was a conundrum for me as a new believer. Yes, I had been born again as Jesus told Nicodemus. But I did not feel or recognize anything as being knew. All of the old ways of my life were still in effect. I continued to drink, smoke, curse and lived an ungodly life. I was not instantaneously transformed into this new creature, yet that is the claim of this verse. I did not know how to reconcile the verse with the reality. Is the bible pie in the sky? Is it making claims which are untrue? I felt like, I most certainly was not a new creation.
It took years for me to be able to see that the day I accepted Christ into my life, a new life had actually begun. All things from that point on had indeed become new. Old things had passed away, and new things had taken their place. What I had not realized, what I was not aware of was that a new heart was placed in me. That an infant had been born, that needed to be fed, nurtured, lead, taught and loved. Everything was new because everything I had to learn, was something I had not previously known.
The only difference between being raised by your natural parent and being raised as a new creation in Christ is. A natural parent will not give you a choice because they realize that an infant or even a teenager will not always make the best decision. Being brought up in Christ is always a decision you make. Christ always asks you to follow He does not command. He will always tell you the best way to do, live, act, love, but it will always be up to you to follow. You are a new creation, but your growth, development, and maturity are not based on time it is based on choice. You can be a new creation for fifty, sixty, seventy years. You can remain a baby.
11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 1 Corinthians 13:11 (KJV)
In Christianity maturity is a choice it does not happen with age. When I was a child (new believer) I thought the primary purpose of Christianity was to benefit me. I now realize that is a truth. The closer and more in line and aligned I get to Jesus the better it will be for me. Following Jesus is self-serving. You can not help profiting personally by following Jesus. It is not possible. There is nothing you can do for Jesus which will not result in blessing. For all of you who are saying “but,” if the blessing is not apparent in this life it will be in the next. Christian maturity leads you to the knowledge that in all things God will defend, protect and secure His children. We are blessed because we are His. All things are new because you now belong to the God who is infinite in power, wisdom, and sight. All things are new because if you choose to learn what God wants to teach, you will grow into the new creation He intended for you to be. In choosing God, you chose eternal life with Him which is only available to those who become a “New Creation.”
My advice to you after years of making the wrong choices choose to learn what God wants to teach you. The old you will thank you more than you will ever imagine.