The New Year Is In Me

"Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old is gone, the new is here." --2 Corinthians 5:17

Read: 2 Corinthians 5

The confetti is all but cleaned up, the streamers are in the trash, Christmas decorations have been stored and the calendar is brand new. Deep breath...and...let it out. So THIS is 2014! But it doesn't take long for things to feel normal again does it? For some reason, the commute this morning is still bumper-to-bumper, co-workers are still grumpy and junk food made its way back to your lunch box. Seems last year's ho-hums and habits still cast their shadows.

Truth is, a new year is only new if we make it that way. For you and me, a change in year only matters when it changes in here (this is me pointing to my heart). So starting today, no matter what seems old, let's find a way to make it new. That commute? Try seeing it as an extended quiet time with the Lord. Those co-workers? Be the only one in the office unwilling to gossip or grumble. And at lunch, be the first to push away from the table as a way to praise the Lord for health. Slowly but surely, we'll realize the difference is in us. Seems those weren't shadows after all. It was shade.

–Jimmy Peña

For Discussion: You and I aren't strong enough to overturn our circumstance, but Jesus is. And if we rely on Him each day, we can conquer our battles. Anxiety, health, job-related stress -- all of it needs to be placed at the foot of the cross as soon as our feet hit the floor. The closer we get to Him, the more shade we find. Welcome back, kids. And welcome, 2014.

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