New Year, New Life

Pastor’s Corner – January 4, 2014

 Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! (2 Cor. 5:17)

 God the Father tells us in Lamentations 3:23 that his mercies and compassions are new every morning.  How thankful I am for that!  Who am I that God is mindful of me?  By his design each day is created new.  Each day is fresh.  2013 is behind us.  And 2014 is a new, fresh year!

 Along with my excitement of a new beginning is a measure of soberness as I realize the significance of “merices.”  Why mercies?  Sometimes I find myself thinking that I am so good and so right on my own accord.  Truthfully though, I’m not that great.  God doesn’t owe me anything based on my merit.  In fact I’m far short of God’s standard of holy.  I’m not beating myself up – I’m just being realistic about the things I think, say and do. 

 The reality is that I don’t deserve His mercies – it is in God’s power and authority to respond with punishment.  Instead, God sent Jesus to be the scapegoat on my behalf.  It is right for me to be excited about new mercies every morning, but the cost of that new mercy is the significant sacrifice on a cross.  Because of that incredible display of mercy, I have the opportunity to live well, to live with integrity and strength.  In fact, I have the responsibility to live in such a way that I – through Christ – make a difference in this world. 

 The Apostle Paul in Philippians 3:12-14 (NLT) says it this way, “I don’t mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection. But I press on to possess that perfection for which Christ Jesus first possessed me. 13 No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”

 It is a season of making resolutions.  And it is soon to be a season of forgetting resolutions.  However, let’s resolve to always allow Christ to mold us and shape us into the men and women of God that he designed us to be.  Let’s resolve to always look to Author and Perfecter of Life as we celebrate the new life we have in Christ.

 2 Corinthians 5:15 “[Christ] died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them.”

 “The future lies before you,

like a field of pure white snow.
Be careful how you tread it,
for every step will show.”
–Unknown

 

Cody Haar

Associate Pastor