“Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.”
One of my favorite things about January is the sense of getting a fresh start. We are culturally programmed to reflect upon the past year and make decisions to improve some aspect of our lives. It is an invitation that says, “The past is the past. Start new.” Of course, nothing magically changes about our lives or situations at the dropping of the giant ball in Times Square at Midnight, December 31 (or is it January 1?). But we have a sense that this is our chance to get it right. This year will be the year that I will…
Isaiah 43 talks about new starts--the kind of new starts that God can bring. It is a new start that is both transforming and renewing--the kind of new start that makes streams in the wasteland. In our salvation, God does something new--He gives us new birth. Paul declares, that in Christ, the old has gone and the new has come. We are new creations in Christ.
God is always looking to do something new in our lives. He is looking to meet us in a fresh new way that He might continue to reveal Himself to us. He wants to make us more like Jesus.
This transformation by God’s Holy Spirit is enabled to continue by our opening our lives in such a way as to allow it. God never forces Himself upon us. We always must invite Him to be a part of our day-to-day activities. Prayer is one of the primary ways that we open our lives up to God. It is not simply a time to tell God what we want. It is a time to listen and allow God the opportunity to continue our transformation into a better reflection of His Son and His Kingdom.
I have a vision that the church would be known as a praying community--that we would be a people who are allowing God to transform us and lead us. I have a vision of people being attracted to our communities of faith, not because we have the flashiest worship or best programs, but because they have never encountered a place or a people that gave them such an authentic experience of who God is and what His Kingdom is like. When they see us—they see Jesus.
May you have an amazing new year! I invite you to journey with me this year as we learn to live unleashed together. I am preparing to relaunch a podcast soon plus there will be many more blog posts and other resources to equip you for the journey. You can subscribe to my newsletter to be notified by email when new posts drop and become a member to my site so that you will gain access to some exclusive members only content.
You might want to check out my post entitled What My Son Taught Me God to continue our journey together.