By God’s grace we have entered a new year and have already started to write the first pages in our book of life for the year ahead.
If you are dissatisfied with how you have lived the years that have passed, there will be new opportunities before you. It can truly be a new year for you, with a new life to the glory of Christ. All of life’s problems can be solved. Jesus came into the world for this very reason: to save people from their sin and misery. He came to set the captives free and to preach liberty to those who are oppressed; He came to put everything in order, praised be His holy name! He came to make you happy, you who are so sad. The year ahead can be a rich and blessed year for you, regardless of how you have lived before.
Go forward to a bright future
Be quick to bring your matters into order with God and people, because time is short. If you have brought your past in order, do not let your thoughts dwell on the wretchedness of your past with the result that your future is also ruined. Satan has taken more than enough of your precious life. Lift up your head in confidence to God and go forward to a bright future. “But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31. Hallelujah! They run tirelessly in the works that have been prepared beforehand until the glorious goal has been reached.
“Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19. God be praised! Rivers of living water can flow into your desert life and transform you into a fruitful garden. This can happen quickly.
However, we are not invited to a life without battles and difficulties. Not at all! We have been invited to a race of faith. “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us …” Hebrews 12:1. Jesus has guaranteed that our race in this battle will be a victory race if we are willing to receive the power He wants to give us from one moment to the next.
God will make you a hero
Heroes are fashioned in the many great trials of life. This holds true for the heroes of this world as well as for the heroes of the kingdom of God. If men like Noah, Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Gideon, Barak, Samuel, Jephthah and David, etc., had not met such great trials their names would never have become known.
Now God has provided something better for us, and we are to join the ranks among the heroes of the new covenant. Now it is our turn to be faithful in both small trials and severe trials, because the one who overcomes himself is greater than he who conquers a great city. Only the heroes of the new covenant have managed to overcome themselves, for the work is finished and the Spirit of Christ has been poured out into their hearts. In this context Jesus is the first and greatest hero, and God is prepared to make a hero of whoever is willing—not so that this person can be called a hero in this world, but in the world to come!
May the Lord abundantly bless the new year for all of us, so that it can become the most blessed and fruitful year in which we have ever lived. And let us live in expectation of Christ’s coming.
This is an adapted version of an article that was first published in Norwegian in BCC’s periodical “Skjulte Skatter” (“Hidden Treasures”) in January 1947.
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