From your pastor…
I appeal to you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.
New Year; New You. It’s the promise we tell ourselves every January. This is our time to improve ourselves, to start over, to start a new. This is the time to join the gym, to eat more vegetables, to organize photos, to walk ten thousand steps a day, to get eight hours a sleep per night, to lose weight, to de-clutter, to lift weights several times a week, to improve our posture, etc., etc., etc. …
Tis the season for self-improvement. Or at least for the first ten or so days of January before we get back to our regular routines and set aside all those goals we set for ourselves.
Personally, I’ve never been a big New Year’s resolution type person. A year always seemed like a really long time to keep up with something. But I do love goals. And I realize that we are called in our scriptures to renew ourselves so that we can be the best version of ourselves for God and for others.
Paul understood this concept of becoming new. Remember for Paul, the reality of Saul was never too hard to find. In fact, that seems to be what is true for most of us. We remember the times in our lives when we were different than who we are now. Sometimes being different meant we were led with a different heart. The memory of who we were before is part of who we are now. However, this is where being new creation offers us a very real hope and way of maturing in our faith.
So as we go about thinking about what goals we can set for ourselves this year, I hope that we will include some spiritual goals for ourselves as well. Perhaps for you it is trying to read scripture every day or read a chapter of from the bible once a week. Perhaps its intentionally having a meal together with your family, saying a blessing, and talking about what you are thankful for that week. Perhaps it’s volunteering at the food bank or finding another way to give back once a month. God is calling each of us to something this year.
So let us be renewed this year.
Happy New Year!