Wednesday, December 30, 2015


With the New Year ahead, we can thank God for a new start. In fact, every morning He blesses us with newness. Happy New Year in Jesus!


Redeeming our time

At the end of each year, I take time to ponder how I used my God-given time—where I succeeded in meeting my goals and why I failed in some. Knowing I can never recapture the time I’ve wasted, I consider how I can spend it with better purpose and wisdom in the coming year. Some call it making New Year’s resolutions.

The trouble is, most of our resolutions come to nothing. We begin with a bang, with the highest of hopes to make it through, and then allow our bad habits to overwhelm our new goals. Such is the life of us weak mortals.

 The good news is that we can redeem our failed resolutions. Remember the old S&H Green Stamps? With every purchase at certain stores, we received so many stamps which, when collected, could be redeemed, or traded, for houseware products. Without realizing our cost, we cashed them in for something of value. It seemed like a Christmas gift!

God is in the business of redeeming our failures and sins. We can cash into His forgiveness any time we choose. We don’t have to commiserate over our past mistakes or make new goals, knowing we’re going to fail. He “gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people ….” (Titus 2:14)

The Old Testament is filled with stories of how God redeemed His people over and over, ever-patient, ever-merciful, when they turned against Him. Yes, at times He disciplined them harshly but always loved them, wooing them to Himself. He does the same for us, even promising double or more blessings in return.

What a mighty, loving God we have! We can be assured that as we confess our failures and “Return to the Lord your God … He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness.” (Joel 2:13)

Lord, thank You for Your redeeming power that sets us free from our past failures and sins. Only You know how much more time we have on earth. As we look to the New Year, give us the grace and wisdom to use Your gift of time wisely—with love for You, for ourselves, and for others. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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