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Another Year, Another Season of Grace

2024 new year blog

Today marks the beginning of another year – 2024. Our reckoning of time itself points to the Lord Jesus Christ. It is 2024 A.D., short for anno domini or “in the year of the Lord.” All of history is so divided into the period before (B.C.) and after (A.D.) the birth of Christ. What is true of the calendar should also be true of our lives. Each year we have is a gift from God, just as Christ is the Father’s great gift. This perspective is important as we face the challenges of the new year and seek to make the most of the time we have.

Listen to Jesus

Far too often, the voices we hear in public are designed to make us ungrateful, miserable, and angry. “Look at all that is wrong with the world!” they cry. “Be outraged at this!” “How can anyone have hope when THIS is happening,” is the constant shriek of those who do not know God. Whether it is designed for profit off of misery or the fulfillment of the proverb, misery loves company; these voices do not have our best interest in mind. The effect of such discouragement is to cause us to take our eyes off of the Lord. Life has always been, and will always be, hard in a world cursed by sin. I am sure you have faced challenges in 2023 – it might have been sickness, relationship problems, or job difficulties – struggles that can even cause us to doubt the care of our Heavenly Father. But we must remember the words of our Savior: “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33) Once we realize that our happiness does not depend on us, we are prepared for the year to come. There is no reason to fear the future, for the one who holds us is the Sovereign King of time itself.

Look for Blessings

Instead, let us face the new year with an expectation of seeing God at work in our lives. The Lord has promised to make us more and more into the image of His Son (Romans 8:29). He has promised never to leave us or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). And best of all, He has promised that we will be His people and He will be our God (Jer. 30:22). So are you looking for all the ways that God is blessing you? One of our problems is that we receive so many blessings that we forget to thank the Lord. When was the last time you thanked God for light, air, or rain? The Lord has brought you through 2023, and He will be with you in 2024. Don’t take my word for it – God Himself has promised it! I am looking forward to a new year with a new granddaughter, another blessed year with my wife and children, and a year filled with encouragement from Christ Church. Take some time as the year begins to list for yourself the blessings you have received in the past year and the anticipated blessings in 2024.

Fill Your Year with the Word

The beginning of the new year is also a time to remind yourself of the importance of the Word of God. You don’t have to read through the whole Bible in a year, but making a commitment to read God’s Word every day will be a great blessing. There are many different plans you can use for reading the Bible in a year, or two years, or even listening to the Bible in a podcast format. There are many different apps that you can use (YouVersion, Logos, Reading Plan, among others), or you can print out a plan the old-fashioned way and put it in your Bible to keep track of your progress. Treasure up the Word in your heart, and the Holy Spirit will point you to God’s grace in your life.

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