Saturday, January 1, 2011

New Year's Revelations

Many people, excluding myself, make New Year's resolutions. As I do not make them myself, I offer little in the way of advice in making them. I do say that if you make them that you should keep them. It is better not to make a vow, even to yourself, than to make one and not keep it.

I would caution, though, that these resolutions can become too focused on "me" and what "I" am going to do - for myself or for God - and less on what God may really want. But the idea behind this blog is a little different. It is more about what God has for us in the new year than what goals we set for ourselves.

Many churches and individual Christians will pray in the New Year (instead of partying) or will be praying around the new year regarding what God has planned for us in the next year. God may reveal to us what the new year will be like.

I specifically remember the new year 27 years ago in 1984 when God gave me an idea as to what that year would bring. Since Christy and I were married in 1980, we had received wonderful spiritual and biblical training, but had no ministry and had greatly struggled financially for a long time. I also was separated from my whole family, especially from my parents.

On the first Sunday in 1984 (I believe it was the 4th), our pastor began his sermon with the words 'new beginnings'. He said that some would experience some 'new beginnings' that year. Those two words rung in my ears for weeks after I heard them. I knew it was the Lord telling me about what 1984 would bring.

Three weeks later, my parents show up out of the blue (they had been living in Chincoteague and we were in northwest Pennsylvania) and we were reconciled immediately. They invited us to vacation in Chincoteague and we did so when I had vacation time in March.

While we were there, he offered me a job and paid me to move here. Immediately, I was making double what I had been before and was developing much needed skills. I also began my teaching ministry that I have been doing ever since on the Eastern Shore.

So in that year, my career began to blossom, my ministry got off the ground and I was reconciled to all my family. That little revelation from God laid the groundwork for what God wanted to do in our lives. "For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29:11)

This year the Lord has given me a word and a Word. What does that mean? It means that He has impressed a concept and a scripture on my heart about this upcoming year. I wish that I could share it with you, but it is between me and the Lord.

So I encourage you to spend time in God's presence and asking Him about His plans for us this year and not just declare our resolutions and our plans for this next year.

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