As this new year begins, it’s time to get rid of the old and embrace the new, make new year’s resolutions and look ahead to all this year offers.
Again, this year we do so with some uncertainty. Pandemics, climate change, division, and polarization seem to be so dominant, and it is easy to enter the year with insecurity and even foreboding. But while we face challenges and difficulties, we need to remember that none of this is new or unexpected.
We live in a fallen, broken world, where there is sin, sickness, and sadness. But we also live within God’s Kingdom of peace, grace, and love. That Kingdom reality can shape our attitudes and perspectives and allow us to enter 2022 with hope.
Paul wrote to the believers in Ephesus:
You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Ephesians 4:22–24 (NIV)
The resolutions we make in our strength do not last. But when we seek to renew our hearts and turn to the Lord, he enables us to experience transformation.
A Prayer for the New Year
Lord, renew our minds as we enter into this new year. Help us put on our new self and walk in righteousness and holiness. Lord Jesus, on our own, we know we cannot bring that change, but with you, we know all things are possible.
Thank you for the gift of your Holy Spirit, who continues to draw us closer to our heavenly Father and who continues to conform us into the likeness of Christ and who, through His empowerment, makes me wholeheartedly willing and ready to live for you.
Lord, let this New Year be one of transformation, not just of our hearts and lives, but also of the world in which we live as we see your work. Amen