The Magic of a New Year
January seems so magical. It feels fresh. It feels rejuvenating as one looks at a brand new calendar with nothing on it, ready to receive new input, see new adventures and dream new dreams. If you had a bad year, then January 1st is a way of saying goodbye to the old year and believe that somehow, someway at the stroke of midnight January 1st, all of the bad is whisked away to oblivion in place of better things to come.
Too bad, January 1st isn’t a magical day. Oh, how I wish that it was. But it’s not. January 1st is just another day. The new year will not be any different than the previous year . . . unless we make it different. How many times have we exited one year with the hopes and dreams of things changing only to find ourselves at the end of the new year in basically the same place we were 364 days earlier? I know that I have done that too many years to count.
So, how can this new year of 2017 be different from 2016? I know that 2016 was a hard year for me. Most of it was an internal issue and my still dealing with things from my past. Nothing really bad or catastrophic happened to me in 2016, other than losing my mom which was a hard thing to deal with but I knew that it was coming.
As I contemplate my life for 2017 and wanting it to be different than 2016, I realize that the only way for it to be different is for me to make the right choices. Some days I wish that someone else could make the hard choices in life for me. It’s tough being an adult sometimes. It’s tough to make yourself do things that you don’t want to do. It’s tough to forgive people and not hold grudges. It’s tough to show grace and mercy when all you want to do is hurt people back for hurting you. It’s tough at times to trust God, especially when you are angry at Him.
It’s hard sometimes to manage the decisions you know are the right ones. I love what John Maxwell says, “making the decisions is easy. Managing the decisions is hard.” That is so true!
I have not made any resolutions this year. I have not even set any goals this year. What I am doing is focusing on me, the real me. I am focused on getting honest with myself, allowing God to really show me who I am. It’s good for us to allow Him to show us all of the hidden things in our lives. In order to change, one must know what they are dealing with.
I don’t believe that God ever deals with the false us. He only deals with the real us. Many times, we have to allow Him to show us the real us so that we can truly move forward. So many of us are wearing masks, and putting on shows, hiding our true identities out of fears and insecurities. We have done this for so long that we don’t even know who we truly are anymore. It takes a revelation of God to truly find ourselves.
We cannot defeat what we will not engage. I am firmly convinced that my greatest enemy is me. I cannot defeat myself (all the wrong in my life) until I am willing to engage myself (come face to face with the real me). I have decided this year to really engage who I am and defeat the parts of me that need to be defeated so that I can become the amazing person that God created and saved me to be.
I believe that every one of us has purpose and worth. Yet, so many struggle to know their purpose and worth. I know that I have struggled in these areas myself. 2017 is my year of discovery. It’s my year to set sail on a great expedition to discover Michael, to find new lands and conquer new territories in my own life.
January isn’t magical, as I would like for it to be. However, my choices are magical. Each choice has the potential to further me or thwart me. Each choice has the potential to unlock something in my life or imprison me. I am focused on making choices that free me this year, as I have made too many choices that have put me in my own personal prison.
Jesus came to set us free. Free from our sins, our addictions, our failures, and our bad choices. He came to free us so that we could become the best of who we really are. That’s my desire for 2o17 . . . free to be me. My desire for you is that you be the real you.
Sounds magical, doesn’t it? What about you? Are you free? Are you going to find yourself on December 31, 2017 in the same place you were on December 31, 2016? I hope not. Let the magic of your good choices set you free this year!