Monday, January 5, 2015

New Year Encouragement

"Happy New Year Everybody.
Let that word roll around on your
tongue and in your mind. Grace gives us
that opportunity every morning."
-Tenth Avenue North

I saw the quote above on Twitter on New  Year's Eve. I think it is such a great reminder of the fresh start that Christ gives us, not only at the beginning of a new year, but every single day. How wonderful it is that He set our calendars with new years, new months, new days so that we can always feel as if we have been given a fresh start. I'm not the kind of person to come up with very specific New Year's resolutions, but every year I do have hopes for the new. I believe all of us have a desire in us to live a life of purpose. We were made for so much more than to just merely exist. Without Christ, however, our lives have no purpose and we are merely existing. We were designed to praise the name of Yahweh and declare the gospel to all the nations. I encourage you, sisters, to turn to Christ. Don't waste this year, but pray that your life would be found holy and blameless before your Maker. If you have a roof over your head, clothes on your back, a little change in your pocket, then you are immensely blessed. It seems cliche, but it's so true. God has blessed you. There will not be one of you reading this who doesn't have access to the gospel. That alone is an incredible blessing.

Pray that this year your life would bless God. Pray that you would not live in fear, but in trust. Pray that you will boldly and unashamedly declare Christ's name. Pray that your love for Christ would abound, and spill out into the lives of others. Empty yourself, so that Christ can fill you. If you are a believer, remember that your identity is found in Christ, and in Him alone. Don't let the lies of the enemy destroy you and keep you from serving God. Pray that your life in all aspects--work, relationships, schoolwork, etc.--would glorify God. Pray that you would be first and foremost, a servant to God, and secondly a servant to matter who they are or how hard it may seem. Pray that you would be consistent, daily, in prayer and reading the Word. A relationship with God is important and talking to Him and listening to Him are both necessary for a healthy one. Pray that you won't rely on your own strength. Desiring to love God more and serve Him better is good, but always check yourself to see who you're really relying on...yourself or God. Relying on yourself you'll find yourself discouraged and failing, but with God all things are possible. Pray that God would grow you and pray also that He would stretch you. It's a little scary (believe me, I know) to pray that He would stretch you, but it will be worth it. Lastly, I want to share a song with you. No matter who you are, where you've been, or what you're going through, be encouraged today knowing that you were meant to be...

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