New Year, New Way
by Austin Black | December 28, 2016
What was once a “New Year” is getting ready to pass away. Too often we look back with regrets and disappointment. I believe that we all have those things. However, I believe that regrets and disappointments should be springboards rather than discouragements. We serve a God that tells us that He can work all things together for our good (Romans 8:28). But we rarely live that way.
A new year is coming. It will eventually become an old year. We “resolve” to live new years better than old years but it seems to be an endless cycle that we settle into old habits. So how do we break this cycle?
I believe it is fairly simple. Not easy, but simple: We begin to live the lives we were created to live.
We try and lose a few pounds. We try to read more. We want to begin a new hobby or stop procrastinating…whenever we can get around to it.
Why don’t these things last? Why are resolutions things that we make to break? Because we are trying to get things in order…out of order.
It boils down to the question of: “Why do we desire these resolutions?” To better ourselves. But why do we want to better ourselves? And the answer to that question is the root of whether 2017 will be just another new year that turns old…Or if 2017 will be a year that, truly, does change the course of your life.
Bettering ourself for the sake of bettering ourself is putting lipstick on a pig (no offense to those that are trying to lose weight!). It doesn’t move the needle of our lives.
However, bettering ourselves so that we can follow Christ better…bettering ourselves so that we can live out our lives in the way that God has called us to…bettering ourselves so that we can look more like Christ…those things move the needle of our lives because those things move the heart of God.
If we will begin there, then often times many of our “resolutions” become byproducts of our growth in Christ.
I want to give you some things to ponder as we head toward 2017. Not to “resolve” but to, maybe, just begin doing what God has already told us to. My goal is to begin putting some things in place to help you and our church to live 2017 differently.
1.) Who is ONE person in your life that you can commit to reach for Christ in 2017? Be specific.
2.) Commit to disciple 1-2 people in 2017. Jesus made it clear that this is what we were to be doing with out time, but rarely do we take part. I will put some things in place. But who are 1-2 people that you can disciple?
3.) Commit to serve. Matthew 20:28 tells us that Jesus came to serve rather than to be served. Where can you plug in to God’s church in 2017 to serve and to serve well.
4.) Commit yourself to the Word. If you are not growing in the Word then the rest will struggle. Have a plan. Get a devotional. Set a specific time each day. Make a plan. Fail to plan and you have planned to fail.
If you want 2017 to, truly, be a new year…this is your place to start. I look forward to being a part of this journey with you.