Happy New Year 2022
"Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new."
A brand new year for us to celebrate. As we looked back over 2021 I realized the amazing work God did in my life, in my family, and in our church. Was it a perfect year devoid of all problems and struggles? Well of course it wasn't, there were plenty of difficulties, trials, bad days, and more. At the same time, I was able to look at the amazing work God has done, give Him glory, honor, and praise for it, and be reminded that even in the difficulties God is working all things for our God as we follow Him (Romans 8:28). If you haven't yet, I would highly encourage you to spend some time reflecting on God's goodness, faithfulness, and work in and through your life over the last year. If you need some encouragement feel free to listen to our Vision and Mission 2022 Part 1 sermon on our website where we did exactly that as a church. But I digress.
Why am I writing this blog today? What do I need to hear and what could possibly encourage you? Well for that we return to our verse at the top. We have a promise in the book of Revelation that one day God will make all things new. There will be no more sorrow, no more sin, no more pain, no more struggles. For those of us who have placed our faith in Jesus Christ and all He has done for us we have the promise of a new future in Him. I personally cannot wait. Let's apply that to 2022. When 2021 began we were still in the midst of the pandemic, 2020 was a year to be happily forgotten, the politics of our nation were in chaos and we had hopes that 2021 would be different. I don't know about your experience but it didn't seem all that different to me. However, God is still at work, God is still on the throne, God still did amazing things in my life, family, and church. This is a wonderful reminder to me that God is in control, He knows what He is doing and it makes me excited for what 2022 will hold.
I will not pretend that 2022 will not be filled with more difficulty, I am not that naive nor do I ignore past experience so easily. However, what I do know is that 2022 is an opportunity for God to continue to work in wonderful ways in our lives. Remember Philippians 1:6 reminds us that God will complete the work He has begun in us. That promise includes all that will happen in 2022. I know it can be hard to see at times, and I know we grow impatient, at least I do. But I also know and trust that my wonderful God is at work and will continue to be at work and I cannot wait to see the amazing things He does in the upcoming year.
With that in mind let me close with Isaiah 26:3, "You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You." The NLT puts that same verse this way, "You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!" There are two commands and one promise in this verse. What I love is that the promise is given first, God promises us peace when we do two things. First, we are to keep our minds and thoughts fixed on God. Second, we are to trust in Him. This is what Jesus told us to do in Matthew 6:33 to seek first God's Kingdom. Paul encourages us to do this in Philippians 4:8 to think on good things and there is nothing better to think on than the good things of God. When our minds and thoughts are fixed on the Lord and we trust in Him with all we are He promises us His peace. As we move into 2022 let me encourage you to focus on Him, to trust Him and His promises to work in your life. When we do that we can rest in His peace and whatever 2022 brings, we can know our God is in control. May God bless you in this New Year!
Image Borrowed from Parade.com