Happy OLD Year!
I don’t know about you, but the sound of that makes me depressed.
Why? Could three little letters really make that big of a difference?
Think about it.
For Christmas, most of us were given something NEW: clothes, gadgets, home decor,etc. And that NEW possession was nothing short of thrilling.
What if every gift you received was something you already owned? If someone gift-wrapped your old Iphone, your empty perfume bottle or your holey underwear, you would look up confused and ask, “Umm, are you serious?!”
That’s because in our subconscious, we all expect something NEW. And in light of that anticipation of the NEW, you tore into that gift.
I BELIEVE THE DESIRE FOR NEW IS BUILT INTO OUR DNA BY GOD HIMSELF.
Let’s get pessimistic for a minute. What if all we had to look forward to in 2018 was what we encountered in 2017? Sure, some great moments occurred in the past 12 months. However, all of us were also confronted with high levels of tension, pain and disappointment. So the thought of pushing COPY on the OLD year and PASTING it into the NEW year isn’t exactly thrilling for most of us.
I’ve never looked up the definition of the word “NEW” until now. Webster shows two definitions:
- Not existing before; made, introduced or discovered recently or now for the first time.
- Already existing but seen, experienced or acquired recently or now for the first time.
See the difference? In definition #1, something is introduced or discovered. But in definition #2, that same thing is experienced or acquired. In other words, #1 is information and #2 is revelation.
Lamentations 3 tells us, “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end. They are NEW every morning.”
For many of us, this verse isn’t new. We know God loves us and has mercy for us in vast sums. The question is, are we simply aware of His love and mercy (information)? Or are we truly seeing, experiencing and acquiring all He has for us (revelation)?
HIS MERCIES ARE A NEW GIFT TO BE UNWRAPPED EVERYDAY!
Tragically, some people leave that gift under the tree. They think their best has passed them by and the past is doomed to repeat itself. Or they may be tired of risking with God and just kick into a survival mentality.
But that’s not who you are as a person.
That’s not who we are as a church.
ANTIOCH, WE NEED TO GET AHOLD OF THE FACT THAT 2018 HAS NEW WRITTEN ALL OVER IT.
And it’s all powered by the engine of steadfast love and NEW mercies.
How do we know?
Because He said it, “Behold, I am making all things NEW!” (Isaiah 43:19)
So my prayer for 2018 is that you would, “not dwell on the former things, for He is doing a NEW thing.” And as you embrace this NEW year, don’t be content to merely gather more information about God. But, by the Holy Spirit‘s power, may you grasp more revelation of all He is and all He wants to do.
So welcome to new mercies.
Welcome to 2018.
Happy NEW year!
Carl Gulley – College Pastor
And, to help you get ready for the year ahead – fill out this Roles and Goals for 2018 sheet.