I had an outlandish dream last night where something was going terribly wrong. I don’t remember the specifics, only that I was on a high balcony, of sorts, looking down on a skirmish.
skir·mish /ˈskərmiSH/ noun
an episode of irregular or unpremeditated fighting
(definition from Oxford Languages Dictionary)
The right side of the rectangular space, onto which I peered, was elevated above the left side. People from both sides were yelling at each other. The tension mounted quickly.
Someone from the higher side picked up a huge, stone statue from the corner, and hurled it down on the lower side. Just as it was about to crush the people below. I yelled “RESET TO FACTORY SETTINGS” and everything immediately returned to normal. The statue stood in the corner, and the people – all minding their own business, were eating, dancing, and chatting quietly amongst each other. Whew, that was close!
Dreams are often unrealistic like that. And sometimes, they are meaningful. Those words “reset to factory settings” have been reverberating in my mind all morning.
I accidentally reset a device to factory settings once. I lost everything I had worked hard to customize and save. That was devastating!
I have also intentionally reset devices to factory settings. It creates a clean slate – a new blank canvas, so to speak. It can’t be done to reverse a skirmish. But I do believe God used my dream to teach me about what He’s done and what you and I can do.
What has He done?
In essence, when I accepted Christ, I was reset to factory settings. He threw my sin as far as the east is from the west, making me – in His eyes – as fresh as the day He created Adam. And every time I make a mistake, I can repent, and He will completely forgive me, taking me back to that setting of life.
“For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.”Psalm 103:11, 12
I have an advantage in that I retain memory of my experiences when I am reset to factory settings. I have a clean slate AND the wisdom of lessons learned. That is the best of both worlds! What a smart program Jesus has built!
What can I do?
I can reset my relationships to factory settings. I don’t mean that I can maneuver other people’s lives before their creator, but I can wipe their slates clean, as far as it applies to me. I can offer complete forgiveness. I can give new chances and fresh starts to my people connections which have gone awry.
“If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”Romans 12:18
What can you do?
We don’t have the power to catch people getting out of control and simply reset them to factory settings, like I did in my dream. But God does. We must buy in to it, of course, but the offer stands.
Oh, what the skirmish must look like from His perspective! The statues have been thrown, so to speak. The idols of this world are heavy and we are sure to be crushed by the weight of them. But God.
Does your life need a complete reset to factory settings? Talk to God about it. He is faithful. He wants to wipe your slate clean. He will renew your right standing if you ask.
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”1 John 1:9
“Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.”Psalm 51:10