I like January.

As much as I enjoy the holiday season, I relish the chance to slow down, reflect on the year gone by and to ponder the up and coming New Year.
I look through my previous year’s journals, and then record all the answered prayers. I marvel at God’s faithfulness. I take time to ponder unanswered prayers and unmet goals. Plus I acknowledge my personal failures and shortcomings in the past year.

But then I let it all go.

I thank God for His faithfulness and allow His grace and forgiveness to wash over me. That’s what January means to me – a new beginning. I think of what the LORD said to the Israelites in Isaiah 43, that they were not to consider the things of old because He was doing a new thing for them.
So I put down the past year and anticipate with hope what the New Year may hold and how I can personally walk in newness.

What growth will take place in my heart this year?

How will I be different by year’s end?

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; the new has come. (2 Corinthians 5:17)

Actually each day offers us a chance to restart….

….to put aside the previous day, will all its struggles and regrets,  and begin with renewed energy the next day. “His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning and great is His faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3: 22-23)
I can’t change the past or erase my mistakes. Nor can I take on tomorrow (yet). But I have today.  In what way can I be different today? In which way can I take off a bit of my old self and replace it with a new self? (Ephesians 4:22-24)

Prayer for the New Year: Lord, the older I get, the more I realize that I am running out of time to grow and change. I want this year to be all you want it to be for me and I desire to change in all the ways you want me to change. Change me and make me new one day at a time.  Use me to further Your Kingdom this year.

Other Verses of Renewal for the New Year:

 Acts 3: 19-20 “Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord…..”
 Philippians 3:13-14 “Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead. I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
Isaiah 40:31 “But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”
 Psalm 65:11 “You crown the year with your bounty; your wagon tracks overflow with abundance.”