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Happy New Year’s 2015

February 2, 2015

Grace to you! A new year is already under way! The new year always brings a sense of renewal and offer for a fresh start. What is it about changing the day over from December 31st to January 1st that affects us so much? Why do we as humans hope for new things? I was watching the birds at my bird feeder recently and realized they think nothing of the new year. They only care if their food is going to be in the feeder! Nor does the rest of the animal world have a sense of a new year. So why is it that people look with expectancy for a fresh, new year?

Scientifically, we understand that a new year is nothing more than the earth starting another 365 day pilgrimage around the sun. So again, why do we attach significance to another run around the sun? Scripture gives us the answer. Romans 8 says, “23 And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. 24 For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.”

Ever since our first parents sinned against God in the garden of Eden, mankind has been in exile from God’s presence and God’s garden. Man’s spiritual and physical environments are not what they ought to be. You know it; I know it. We know it intuitively in our hearts and we know it through experience. Every year we are reminded that everything falls short of what it could have been, even the best of things. It leaves us with a taste in our heart for something bigger, greater, fuller. Something that is ‘perfect.’ And not only perfect, but stays perfect once and for all. It’s why when the new year comes an inner sense of hope for second chances and for something better rises up within us.

Why is it there? Because we know this not God’s ideal. Last year showed us all things fell short of what they could have been! This is God’s grace tickling our inner hearts reminding us that we ourselves need a new beginning. That there is hope for a new, clean, and final start! God gives us this in His Son, the Lord Jesus: “28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

Creation, including ourselves, cries out for a new beginning. It’s why we love New Year’s day. It’s a reminder from the Lord Jesus that all things can and will become new one day through Him. And the beginning of the newness can begin today if you will turn from your sins and come to the One who can give you rest in a world full of years that doesn’t live up to expectations.

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