Happy New You!

Happy New Year,
from Times Square, New York
There are many in our church ready to say goodbye to 2013. So much change, turmoil, sorrow and heartache. A new year always promises us a new beginning, but like a new car, a new year will soon lose its new car smell. A ding, a scratch, a stain will surely come into 2014, just as it has in every year in the past.

But that is no reason to be “Debbie Downer” about the new year. The promise for the Christian is that Christ “makes all things new” (Rev. 21:5). One of my life verses is 2 Cor. 5:17, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold all things have become new.”

But can we truly have that, even in the midst of “when sorrows like sea billows roll”? Those very words were penned by a man who had lost his daughters, but had the blessed assurance that through Christ, he would see them again.

Jesus described the Kingdom of Heaven in Matthew 13:52 as like a householder who brings out of his treasure things new and old. Parables like this one let us see what it must have been like for the disciples who were often dull and not understanding, because I

cannot tell you everything that this parable means, but certain one thing is true. When we are born again, or born from above, or born anew (all of those are good translations of Jesus’ words to Nicodemus in John 3), we have a similarity to who we were (things old) but are also to our new creation (treasures new). It is like that for this life and for the life to come.

A new testament, a new covenant, a new commandment (John 13:34), a walk in “newness of life” (Rom. 6:4). Don’t try to put new wine in old wineskins. In other words, don’t try to wear the clothes you wore as a baby! Those old clothes don’t fit anymore, and the things that made us “happy” in the old life won’t fit anymore either. We are in Christ to put on “the new man” (Eph. 4:24), created according to God in true holiness.

I cannot promise you 2014 will be a “Happy New Year.” In fact, something will happen that will soon drown out the New Year’s eve whistles and buzzers and dim the light of the dropping ball. But in Christ, I can wish you a “Happy New You.” How can we become new? By baptizing ourselves, immersing ourselves into the “newness of the Spirit” (Rom. 7:6) which only God can give. Commit yourself to have personal quiet times alone with God and His Word each day. Join a Bible Study fellowship (a LifeGroup).

Come to a Discipleship Class on Sunday afternoons, starting at 4:30 p.m. Jan. 12. Worship the Living God who makes all things new each day of the New Year.

And Have a Happy New You!!


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