The beginning of a new year can be a holy time of profound opportunity. Stretched out before us are months, fresh and unwritten as the blank pages of a new calendar. Waiting for us are experiences yet to be lived, adventures yet to be enjoyed, and blessings yet to be discovered.
Starting out with fresh faith.
There’s such possibility in the start of a year.
Some of us jump into all of this open possibility with the best of intentions and maybe even some resolutions and goals. We race into plans to organize, improve, shape up, slim down…or whatever happens to have made our list of goals.
But sometimes we can get stuck. Have you ever felt stalled, hesitating at the edge of all this potential? For some, possibility twists into pressure, when our eyes are on our failures and our ears are only listening to the critical voices that chatter in our heads.
New Year’s resolutions and goals can make projects of personalities, as if our true selves are something we must shape and mold to perfection with the right choices and greater discipline.
- Better eating habits
- Exercise more regularly
- Get up earlier
- Be more organized
- Be more patient
- Stop worrying
Goals and resolutions have value, but are we aiming for perfection rather than growth? When our goals become entrenched in fixing what’s broken and righting what’s wrong, good intentions can become a weight of condemnation hanging around our necks.
Is this the way God wants us to begin this year?
Over-focus on self-improvement can narrow our vision to faults, lacks, and mistakes. If you find yourself always making goals from a negative perspective, it may be time to try a new way of making goals.
Maybe it’s time to let go of a pass or fail mentality of measuring up and remember once again that we are saved by grace and filled with faith by the power of Christ. It may be time to rediscover the power of small changes and simple holiness wrapped in each day.
Fresh faith for your new year.
After all, this year is a significant portion in God’s plan for our lives. He can do a lot with 365 days, which is 8760 hours. So even though I am making goals for myself this year, I am embracing fresh reminders of God’s truth. I’m shifting my perspective from self-improvement to what God desires to work in my life this year.
[tweetthis hidden_hashtags=”#NewYear #Faith #Goals”]Isn’t it time to break free from the get-it-all-together mentality?[/tweetthis]
This year, let’s break free from the get-it-all-together mentality, trusting God to work on what pleases Him.
Let these words refresh your focus:
It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for.
Long before we first heard of Christ,….he had his eye on us,
had designs on us for glorious living,
part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone.–Ephesians 1:11 MSG
God’s design for glorious living–now that sounds like a fabulous year! His work is the truest source of fresh faith and holy living.
[tweetthis hidden_hashtags=”#Faith, #resolutions, #newyeargoals”]Discover the holiness of God’s vision for this year.[/tweetthis]
Oswald Chambers explains the importance of seeking God’s vision rather than our self-improvement plans:
“We simply begin to act on our own initiative. If we are eating only out of our own hand, and doing things solely on our own initiative without expecting God to come in, we are on a downward path. We have lost the vision. Is our attitude today an attitude that flows from our vision of God? Are we expecting God to do greater things than He has ever done before? Is there a freshness and a vitality in our spiritual outlook?” My Utmost for His Highest, May 9.
Let’s encourage one another to trust God to work His will and purpose in our lives. This is the nudge of fresh faith to remember.
For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.–Philippians 2:13 NLT
Fresh words to set your heart free.
Holiness comes as God gives us the desire and the ability (power) to do what pleases Him. So we can stop holding our breath and experience the God-rhythm of grace each day.
For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.
Philippians 1:6 NASB.
Too often, I get side-tracked, wanting to be perfect, or at least the very best I can make myself. But perfect in this verse means to complete. This is the year to enter with confidence of fresh faith. Join Paul and proclaim with a joyful heart: I am confident because I know God is completing and working in me for His very good purposes. This kind of confidence changes the landscape of our hearts, freeing us from fear.
Friend, as you begin this year, take a little time to ask God to place His desires and fresh faith in your heart. Find delight in His presence knowing that His work in your heart is the work that is bringing everything together, holy and whole.
What’s one way you are trusting God to work in you this year? Holy in the Moment will help you make intentional choices to unleash God’s best in your life this year! You can find out more here.
*This post contains an affiliate link at no cost to you.
Such a great reminder — growth over perfection or checking off a list of resolutions. Loved the Oswald quote as well. Thanks, Ginger! P.S. What program do you use for your graphics?
Happy New Year, Cathy! There’s so many Chambers quotes I could have used for this post. It was hard to only choose one. I use Picmonkey for my graphics. Learning Canva’s on that list I never seem to get to. Thanks for chiming in today!
Amen, Ginger! I love the way you captured this truth: “It may be time to rediscover the power of small changes and simple holiness wrapped in each day.” thanks for the timely reminder 😉
Welcome, Cynthia. Love that we can hang out in this online space and chat about things true and wonderful. I love knowing what stands out to folks. It makes me reflect even more. Blessings!
Love the idea of new starts and your thought on doing that with our faith as well. Such a great reminder!! Love your heart Ginger and they way you put it into words. Thanks too for joining Planting Roots #MondayminutewithGod!
“Good intentions can become the weight of condemnation” Oh, girl! PREACH! Such truth and wisdom!
Thanks for joining the conversation, Liz! I am the Queen of Good Intentions!
What a refreshing perspective, Ginger. I am savoring this quote: “I am confident because I know God is completing and working in me for His very good purposes.” I don’t need to work myself into a self-improvement frenzy; I need to grow in trust and peace, seeking God first.
Amen, Sarah. I have to continually remind myself to draw life from Christ rather than self. Umm…like every single day! Thanks for visiting today.
Beautiful rendering of what’s been on my heart, Ginger. Thanks for the breath of fresh air. So freeing to see it this way. Blessings to you, my friend!
You’re welcome. Glad you stopped by for a visit. I’ve spent too many years bowing under the weight of not good enough. I’m learning to trust God to work and guide. Blessings right back at you:)
Great reminder! Growth is more important than perfection. I need that tattooed on my wrist!
Not a bad idea. Or at least a big, huge sticky note on the fridge. Here’s to lots of lovely growth this year!
And, who couldn’t use a heaping dose of FREE this year? Nice post, Ginger. (And, precious pictures. 🙂 ) — One thing I’m trusting God for this year is his hand of favor and community for my children. 🙂
Oh, I know that prayer so very well! Especially after many military moves–prayed like crazy for community for my kids. Joining you in prayer for your peeps!
This is one of my favorite points to meditate on: “So even though I am making goals for myself this year, I am embracing fresh reminders of God’s truth. I’m shifting my perspective from self-improvement to what God desires to work in my life this year.”
I love the thought of shifting my perspective from self to what God desires – amen!!!
Yes, this perspective shift makes a big difference! So much can happen when we cooperate with what God wants to do in our lives!