Here's what Paul wrote to the Corinthians: So we have stopped evaluating others by what the world thinks about them. Once I mistakenly thought of Christ that way, as though he were merely a human being. How differently I think about him now! What this means is that those who become Christians become new persons. They are not the same anymore, for the old life is gone. A new life has begun! All this newness of life is from God, who brought us back to himself through what Christ did. And God has given us the task of reconciling people back to him. (II Corinthians 5:16-18 NLT)
Based on that, Happy New You seems very appropriate. Every Christian should be able to articulate what has changed in their life as a result of the newness that Christ has brought to their lives. Otherwise, do we really need Him?
I'm reading through the book of James for the second time in 2 weeks. Wow. I never made the connection between the passages about faith and works and the words of Paul in Corinthians. But if you look at the chapter above and then read James 2: 17 about faith without works being dead it only reinforces the fact that there is an obvious change in my life B.C. and A.D.S. (Before Christ and After Dying to Self) "So you see, it isn't enough to just have faith. Faith that doesn't show itself by good deeds is no faith at all-- it is dead and useless."
And God has given us the task of reconciling people back to him. This is my "New Me Resolution": I want to be part of reconciling people back to God.
I don't know how this will take shape in 2008. It may be sharing the gospel of Jesus with my neighbors across the street. It may be through the discipleship of a friend who is so eager for true freedom in Christ. And I pray it is through the continued mentoring of my own children as they grow in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
When (and if!) 2009 comes, I want to be able to look back and see the ways that I have grown in Christ in 2008. I don't want to remain the same. I don't want to be a scummy pond without a fresh spring flowing into it. I want the life of the Spirit of Jesus to be alive and active in me so that I remain fresh and prepared for that task of reconciliation God has given me.
Happy New You! What's your New You Resolution? Do you have a desire or plan for growth in 2008?
All this newness is from God. . .