The book of Revelation is challenging to read, but inspiring to consider. The apostle John describes the end of life, as we have known it, and the beginning of a fresh start in Christ. Consider the Bible’s description of the new Jerusalem in Revelation 21:1-4:
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
New year. New start. New perspective.
With this “bigger picture” in place, we can have a healthy spiritual context for the smaller “new beginnings” in front of us for 2010. No matter how challenging the past year has been for us, we can find avenues for progress by starting with ourselves.
The apostle Paul gives us timeless direction for self-renewal in Romans 12:2: “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is – his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
As you reflect on your resolutions for the New Year, consider these questions:
- In what areas of your life do you conform to the world, rather than mature in Christ? Consider these opportunities for you to let go of priorities or passions that do not honor God, and can pull you away from the path He has for your life.
- Do you intentionally focus on renewing your mind? Do you take time to pray, study God’s word, and learn from fellow Christians? Consider these opportunities to redirect your focus in line with God’s will for your life.
- How do you gauge your thoughts and actions from a spiritual perspective? Would God smile on the direction your life has been taking? Consider these opportunities to check your progress, and stick to the straight and narrow path.
As the New Year represents new opportunities, resolve to honor God, focus on His will and walk the path with Him.
If I could remain true to just these three things all year, I would consider 2010 to be completely successful.