A New Year

Standing at the opening gates of a new year is an awesome thing. No one can really see what will be. As Solomon said, "Every matter has its time and way….who can tell him how it will be?" Even at the best, our acquaintance with the future amounts only to a "perhaps."
Rev. Dr. Stephen P. Natsis | 29 December 2008

Source: Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church of Waterbury

 

 

Every matter has its time and way although man’s trouble lies heavy upon him.  For he does not know what is to be, for who can tell him how it will be?” (Ecclesiates 8:6,7)


Standing at the opening gates of a new year is an awesome thing.  No one can really see what will be.  As Solomon said, “Every matter has its time and way….who can tell him how it will be?”  Even at the best, our acquaintance with the future amounts only to a “perhaps.”

For some people who greet a new year with no expectancy, life is stale and hope has died.  In the face of so many sorrows, fears and disappointments, they are filled with cynicism.  Solomon was such a man.  He observed that “The winds move in circles and never get anywhere.  The rivers flow into the sea, but the sea is never full.  The sun rises in the east and sets in the west with monotonous regularity.  There is only one good man in a thousand; and there isn’t any such thing as a good woman.  Everything is vanity.  And matters cannot be changed.” “The crooked,” he said, “can never be made straight.”

But wait! Before you join Solomon in the chorus of his song, let me remind you of the throne set in heaven and the voice which cries, “Behold, I make all things new.” (Rev. 21:5)  This King of kings and Lord of lords has made possible:

The New Covenant. The Old Covenant was a sentence of death upon all of us (Gal.3:10). But Christ has made a New Covenant and sealed it with his own blood (Mt. 26:28).  And he says, “I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more.” (Heb 8:12) You can receive pardon for the sins of the past.

The New Man. Life can be made over again. Listen!  “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has passed away, behold, the new has come.” (II Cor. 5:17)

The New Way.  The right of approach into the presence of God has been prepared for us “by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way which he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh.” (Heb.10:19,20)

The New Jerusalem.  “He who conquers, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God: never shall he go out of it, and I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem which comes down from my God out of heaven, and my own newname.” (Rev.3:12)

It is a New Year.  And even though we do not know what is to be, we can live under a new covenant, become a new man, walk a new way and come to the new Jerusalem.

 A New Year’s Resolution

 I will:

·                 like Paul, forget those things which are behind and press forward;

·                 like David, lift up mine eyes unto the hill from whence cometh my help;

·                 like Abraham, trust implicitly in my God;

·                 like Enoch, walk in daily fellowship with my heavenly Father;

·                 like Jehosophat, prepare my heart to seek God;

·                 like Moses, choose rather to suffer than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;

·                 like Daniel, commune with God at all times;

·                 like Job, be patient under all circumstances;

·                 like Caleb and Joshua, refuse to be discouraged because of superior numbers;

·                 like Joseph, turn my back to all destructive advances;

·                 like Gideon, advance even though my friends be few;

·                 like Aaron and Hur, uphold the hands of my spiritual leaders;

·                 like Isaiah, consecrate myself to do God’s work;

·                 like Andrew, strive to lead my brother to a closer walk with God;

·                 like John, lean upon the bosom of the Master and imbibe of His Spirit;

·                 like Stephen, manifest a forgiving spirit toward all who seek my hurt;

·                 like Timothy, study the Word of God;

·                 like the heavenly host, proclaim the message of peace on earth and good will toward men;

·                 like my Lord Himself, overcome all earthly allurements by refusing to succumb to their enticements.

 

Realizing that I cannot hope to achieve these objectives by my own strength, I will rely upon Christ for “I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.”  (Phil. 4:13)

 

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