In spite of what the cynics may say, January 1 presents a great opportunity to begin again. While it is true that God’s mercies are new every morning – not just on the first day of the year – there is just something hopeful and energizing about a fresh calendar.
As the year winds down, the invitation to put the past behind and start again with a clean slate sounds really good, especially to those who feel like the previous year was a rough one.
Thankfully, God appreciates the beauty of a new year, too.
After rescuing the children of Israel from a long and grinding detour in Egypt, to symbolize their new freedom, the Lord kindly reset the calendar for them and declared it a new year (Exodus 12:1-2). And just like that their high-mileage hearts were back to zero. They could learn from their past, but no longer would they be condemned to live in it. That’s grace!
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. -II Corinthians 5:17
In Jesus, new beginnings are real. Not only does our first acceptance of Him mark the beginning of a brand new identity, there are also countless January 1st’s after that, those moments when He wipes our slate clean and calls us to rise up and carry on.
Regardless of how many failures, setbacks, or losses we may have accumulated in 2018, January 1 represents this truth: By the grace of God, we can start over.
From Devotions on the Run, God bless you and Happy New Year!
It’s a new day with God. Run with it.