I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to restart this year! It’s been long and hard and I want to start over. What about you? How appropriate is it that we get to end this year focusing on the birth of Christ? Now there’s a positive note.
This week’s word is repentance. It’s not a popular or even pretty word, but it sure is appropriate for the end of a year and a new beginning. It’s a word not many people use anymore and it’s not glamorous. It brings up the dirt in our lives. Repentance means sincere regret and remorse for past offenses. When we repent, we turn the other way or walk away from our sins and we try not to repeat the same mistakes over again.
Last weekend was the beginning of Advent. Four weeks of reflection to get us ready for the birth of our Savior. And as 2020 comes to a close, it’s also a good time to look back on this last year. We can evaluate our past performance and whether or not we have lived up to our goals or ideals. –The good, the bad and the ugly.
Are you happy? Did you live your life to the fullest? Are proud of the person you’ve become, someone that God would be proud of? What can you do to change that?
Let’s take some time before Christmas arrives and reflect on how we could be better versions of ourselves. We can change our minds about our lives and about the kind of people we are or want to be. Give up those things that don’t make us our best selves. Walk away from those things that bring us down. Just decide to hit the reset button and start over right now.
This year has been the most trying year. The election, the virus, rioting and unrest were just a few of our problems. It brought out the worst in a lot of us. If anything good ever came from this coronavirus, it was the time spent at home to reflect, to be by ourselves and evaluate who we are and what is important in our lives.
Repentance is about accepting our faults, acknowledging them and saying “I’m sorry.” Asking God to forgive us is so important in these times.
As we begin a new year and new opportunities await, let’s lay down our past hurts and problems and start with a fresh clean slate. Get out your journal. Write down your hopes for the new year ahead. List the things that you are laying down and giving up. Do you have some bad habits you want to get rid of? Put them on paper. Look at them often as reminders of what you are getting rid of. Make a list of good habits you want to start doing.
Lay everything– your sins, your hopes and dreams– at the feet of Jesus. He is our confessor and consoler. We can confess our sins to Him. He will take them away and make us new and whole again.
I pray that everyone will have a wonderful Advent and Christmas. Let’s get ready for the birth of the one who saves us from our sins and leads us to Eternal Life.
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