New Year – New Beginning
January 2, 2024
God is a God of new beginnings.
Look here, what’s done is done and gone. The now is new, and there’s hope in the not-yet. Isaiah 42:9 VOICE
While some of us can claim to enjoy change more than others, change is often difficult. But change is also a very necessary and natural part of life. It can be hard to let go of the past, whether it was great or difficult, but the future always lies ahead of us with new opportunities and experiences.
We do this effectively by focusing on what we can control and releasing what we can’t control. It requires refusal to get stuck in recurring thoughts about the past or worries and anxieties about the future. Instead, focus your energy on living mindfully in this moment, and let go of any stress or reluctance that comes to mind during the process.
Spiritually, a new beginning is a time to begin again. It’s a time to start over, moving beyond the past, and moving forward with a clear conscience. New beginnings give every person the gift of an opportunity to break away from the old, giving hope for the future.
Beginnings give people the opportunity to set boundaries, lines that mentally draw a line separating the past and the future. We can break old habits and patterns and begin new, healthier ones. Remember that rejection can be protection. When God gives a new beginning, it often starts with an ending. We can learn to be thankful for closed doors because they often provide guidance and direction for a new, better way.
All through Scripture, history, and individual experiences, we see that God is the God of fresh starts. In nature and in our experiences, seasons come and seasons go, but Jesus remains the same. That is the truth that gives us security, stability, and comfort when the new seasons seem frightening.
For a Jesus-follower, new seasons of life always present new, fresh opportunities to serve and build His kingdom. I challenge and encourage you to embrace the new things the Lord is setting up and declaring in your life. We have heard over and over that the only constant in our human world is change. But we have two foundations that will never change: God and His eternal Word, expressed in fullness through Jesus Christ.
In 2024 there will be some changes that we applaud and others we do not like. Either way, our responsibility and privilege is to keep looking to Jesus, trusting His heart and His faithfulness no matter what. We know that His plans are perfect and anything He allows into my life will have a purpose. He is able to take anything and work it out for good. We can’t move forward when we are looking backward and holding on to comfortable ways and convenience. We can get so caught up in the way things were that we think they were “good old days” when they may have been anything but good for us. For sure, they may have had a season, but today is a new day and we want to move forward, following our faithful God.
The wisest thing we can do is give the new seasons of life a chance. Embracing what God has in store for us in the here and now gives us adventure, satisfaction, and peace.
I invite you to pray from your heart with me:
Thank You, Lord, for new beginnings. Your record of faithfulness through history and my own life shows complete commitment to me and unwavering provision. I trust You. I believe that Your peace will watch over me as I step into the new beginning You have prepared for me. This year, I will rely on Your generosity and grace to provide for my physical, emotional, and spiritual needs. You are my King. In Jesus' name. Amen.