“In with the new and out with the old”, or so the saying goes. With 2019 behind us and 2020 squarely facing us, I am never surprised at the sheer volume of quotes from people that I know dedicating the new year to…themselves! For whatever reasons, 2019 was a bad year, an unjust year, a poor year, and the stories go on and on. But inextricably, the new year arrives, and with it comes the promises of good fortune, individual and career successes, good health, fame, well, you get the picture.
Even televangelist and preacher (cough, cough) Joel Osteen tells us that “Your Best is Yet to Come”. So, what happens then, when the new year, looks eerily similar to the old one? Do you pine for 2021?
When you set your sights on earthy things and earthly pleasures, then it really should come as no surprise when “bad things” come your way. We live in a broken world amongst a broken people, and despite all of our best efforts, the brokenness that engulfs us will constantly strive against God. However, there is a flip side to this quandary; when you set your sights on heavenly things, God is a sure bet. His promises are ironclad guarantees, of which one is that “He will never leave you nor forsake you”!
In fact, it is not my idea to set your sight on heavenly things. Instead it is the Word of God that actually tells us to do exactly this; Paul, writing to the church in Colossae stated this; “If you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God…do not set your minds on the things that are on earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. (Col.3:1-4)
The Greek word for “set” means to strive after, be intent on, and it tells you to choose to live this way. It’s not something that just occurs one time and we can forget about it. It’s a way of living, a way of life, that allows you to be set free from the trappings of the world. Those same trappings that would seek to hold you down and render you another casualty in a long list of casualties.
When you become born again, you are given a gift that assures you the victory, both in the here and now, and in eternity. You can stop agonizing over lost opportunities and bad seasons in your life, and instead nurture and grow the faith that God has given to you. Might less than ideal situations crop up in your life? Absolutely! But the faith in our Father is more than capable to overcome all obstacles, and you will realize that “the best to come” has already arrived.
Be “intentional” in 2020 as you focus squarely on the Lord Jesus through His Word, prayer, worship and service.