I'm not a naturally hopeful person. In fact, I'd describe myself as realistic with a heaping dose of melancholy. Left up to my natural state, I'd likely think myself into a tizzy, work myself into depression, and drive myself and others around me nuts. I have it in me to be such a feeler and such a processor of all things that I can burden those around me, expecting more of myself and others than they were ever meant to give.
You see, something in the heart of every person is longing for MORE. We're all longing for the new beginning, the fresh start, the clean slate, the exciting future. But for those of us who are no longer wide-eyed children, for those of us who've walked the road of pain and disappointment...we've seen and felt reality: That just because the calendar turns to January 1st, not all things are reset and made new. Some hurts carry over into the new year. Some struggles in sin persist. Some hopes and dreams still wait for an answer as the calendar tuns over.
But while these are the realities of beginning a new year, our hope that all things will be made new does not rest with the changing of seasons or the countdown to a new year. It is not dependent on how our past year has measured up or how honorable our goals for the new one. It's not even based on how we feel about starting a new year, or the one that is passing. The hope we have for "newness" of life is not an accumulation of how disciplined we've been or what good choices we've made.
The simple truth is that God is making us into a new creation day by day, and promises to finish His work (Phil. 1:6). The old is constantly being replaced by the new. We don't need to rely on worldly optimism or the tyranny of measuring ourselves against others' determination or drive for the new year. We can rejoice in the newness of our life in Christ because He has promised to complete that work in us! We could be facing the toughest year ahead or the most challenging of decisions in the days to come. We can be transferring continued battles with sin and persistent desires for more discipline as we anticipate 2013...and still know the joy of entering into the fresh territories of life He has prepared for you simply because He is at work to make you a new creation.
If you are in Christ...the calendar page has turned and newness of life abounds tomorrow...and always.
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Welcome to GraceLaced Mondays, a link up dedicated to sharing any and all blog posts by like-minded lovers of grace--God's grace! Grace is found in the everyday when you are intentional about taking note of it...and I invite you to share your story, great or small, of how everyday moments are full of Grace.
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