Saturday, January 25, 2014

Have you made a New Year’s resolution?

          Did you make it till midnight on New Year’s Eve? Maybe it’s not important to you to observe this tradition. But, people around the world wait with eager anticipation for the stroke of midnight on December 31st to welcome in the New Year. Party hats and horns, confetti and streamers, balloons and fireworks, are all part of the celebration. Then at midnight, everyone shouts “Happy New Year!”
Have you given much thought to what you are saying when you wish someone a “Happy New Year?” Is it your HOPE that their New Year will be a good one? Is it merely a wish you are making on their behalf? “I hope you win the lottery.” or, “I hope you don’t get laid off.”
Let’s face it. Isn’t looking into the future nothing more than a “hope and a prayer”? After all, we can’t see into the future. We don’t know what’s going to happen or how things will go in our life? Will we lose our job or get a promotion? Will our business prosper or will we go bankrupt? Will we be blessed with good health or face sickness? Will we see the blessed arrival of a baby or face the loss of someone we love? For most the future is seen as a blank slate that has yet to be written. They ask, ‘How can anyone know and be certain that the New Year will be a happy one?’
The truth is that one can know. The truth is that the greeting “Happy New Year” when used for a child of God is not an optimistic wish but something we know will be true. It is a prediction that will become reality. We can say this because it is based on the word and promise of God.
When Jesus came into this world, he did not simply come so we could celebrate his birth. He came to suffer and die. Through that suffering and death, Jesus defeated Satan and freed us from his power. By his resurrection, he assured us that death and the grave can no longer imprison us. By being punished for our sins, he assures us that our sins cannot condemn us. In other words, there is nothing yet to be done to secure our happiness for the future.
While we live on this earth, things may not always be easy. Before we are taken to glory, we feel the effects of sin around us and from within. This experience is not always a pleasant one. When we lose a loved one in death, it hurts. Yet, if they die in Christ, it won’t be long until we see them again. We face problems, many of them, but God has promised to use them for our good. The bottom line is that our futures are bright and our lives are good - so long as Jesus lives in our heart.
If you want your New Year to truly be a happy one, stay close to Jesus and his Word. Let him rule your heart and life. Trust in his promises. Enjoy the blessings he has to give! Have a happy New Year!