January 1st is a day when we look forward to the potential of a new year — one as yet unspoiled by poor planning, bad decisions, or sinful choices. Resolutions are made, appropriate accouterments confidently purchased, and we charge ahead.
Sometimes, the change sticks. Sometimes, it doesn’t. The condition of the world around us isn’t conducive to improvements without considerable willpower and exertion. Come December, many will look back at the wreckage of good intentions, vowing once again to do better.
For those who find their strength in Christ however, not only is there ‘strength for today,’ but a ‘bright hope for tomorrow:’
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place[a] of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people,[b] and God himself will be with them as their God.[c] 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” (Revelation 21:1-4)
It’s been years since I’ve made a “New Year’s resolution.” If something needs fixing, the date on the calendar doesn’t matter. On that score, I count my main success of 2013 to be kicking my diet soda habit, which had reached intravenous drip levels. Thanks to the Middle Musketeer deciding to give up sodas as part of a fast his church praise band embarked on, I’ve had naught but water or tea for the past 18 weeks and counting. The problem with any commitment to good habits and righteous living, though, is the ever-present environment of temptation.
I’m so glad we’re promised that will one day come to an end! Happy New Year — one more year closer to the Kingdom!