Explore More In 2019

Dear Friends,
Unless you possess the confidence of Calvin in the cartoon strip below, odds are you’ve made a few new year’s resolutions over the years.
Many of us are hoping to break some bad habits and/or take up some good ones in 2019.
While resolutions at the start of a new year are good, realistically, the vast majority of us will have given up on them before the first month of the new year is out. However, this doesn’t have to apply to us. We can reach our goals when we know who we are. We know who we are, when we know whose we are. We belong to Christ who gives us the power to do all things when we do them in His name. There is a lot of power in a name, isn’t there?
This past Sunday a worshiper said to me, “Pastor, I’m going by a new name in 2019.” When I asked what that name would be, they replied, “A New Creation!” The person continued, explaining this new name was based on the apostle Paul’s words in his second letter to the Corinthian Church: “So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!” (2 Cor. 5:17)
The reality for us is that it can be very difficult to live into that idea that we are daily renewed and made to be a new creation. We fear failure, which can inhibit our intentions and/or goals of claiming that name that Paul calls us to go by.
Today, on this first day of 2019, I encourage you all to live into your God-given identity as a New Creation and as a forgiven Child of God. Instead of digging our heels into or simply being satisfied with the way we’ve always done things or viewed life, let’s trust Paul’s liberating proclamation that the old has passed and the new has come.
In addition to Paul’s words, perhaps we can even take these final words of Calvin and Hobbes with us into 2019. Calvin and Hobbes were always a favorite cartoon strip of mine. This is cartoonist Bill Watterson’s final strip from twenty-three years ago, December 31, 1995, that I think encourages us to explore all that the new year – and as Paul would add – our new identity in Christ – has to offer.
Explore more in 2019!
Pr. Dale