What an incredible year it has been as we celebrated God’s goodness, provisions and blessings over these last twelve months and now we look forward again to walking ever closer with Jesus in the blessedness of another new year.
Seasons, days and times are given to mankind by God to serve a purpose. According to Genesis 1:14, the different times are to be signs or signals to us. Signs, among other things that point us towards God. The changing of the calendar year is no exception but it can serve as a signal for reevaluation and refocussing our spiritual lives.
The start of a fresh year should trigger the discipline of looking back at the previous twelve months to not only rejoice in God’s goodness that He saw us through and in many instances enabled us to walk in His favour, but to also see where we may have failed or need improvement. Evaluations don’t apply only to professional development in career and education but also to our walk with God, including our spiritual disciplines, our faith and our involvement in God’s Kingdom.
It may be in our prayer lives and devotions, our church attendance, our giving or involvement that we recognise a need for improvement. Let's look at why and how we failed in those areas. In understanding this, we can make the necessary corrections and commitment that this year we will be better and more mature than last year.
The new year means we can start again with a clean slate, leaving 2018 right where it is. This may sound cliche but it is actually more powerful than what one may initially consider. When you leave the failures, disappointments, hurts, guilt and shame of last year under the blood of Jesus, then none of these things can any longer hold any power as a burden and blight upon your conscience or spirit. Instead, with courage and optimism you can realign and refocus your life according to God’s Word and believe God for a year of unprecedented growth and success in God’s amazing grace.
That’s not to say we don’t draw wisdom from the lessons of our mistakes, that would indeed be foolish. But it means that we are energised and look with faith towards this new year, as we look to Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our Faith. I am believing God for growth and revival not only for myself personally but also for our Church. But I’ve got to do my part and make the necessary re-alignments for God to pour out his Grace. I invite you to do the same, so together, we can make a difference in this world for the Kingdom of God!