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As we draw to the close of another year, I like many, have been reflecting on the past year and making plans for the next. As I look back there are areas that I am pleased with and some places that I am not so much. Some areas where I regressed and still more that there have been improvements. I see room to grow. I see how I stunted my growth with bad habits. I see changes that need to be made. I see an opportunity to make a change, to be a new creature.

I read the scripture this morning in 2 Corinthians 5:17,

Therefore is any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Many times we liken this change from old to new at first salvation. There is a crisis moment, Jesus comes down, and a change is made. It is used to encourage someone that had experienced much sin and because of God’s grace, Jesus sacrifice, they no longer have to partake in the same activities.

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But today, as I was reflecting on the new year, I saw it as an opportunity. Even as saints of God, we can become a new creature. If we aren’t satisfied with our service to God, our health, our habits, our attitudes, our outreach, our kindness, our relationships, our “fill in the blank”, we can make the change.

We can have a crisis moment in the middle of our salvation. Salvation isn’t stagnate,  it is an evolving status. We can draw closer to God. We can make better choices for our health. We can change our habits and attitudes. We can be more kind and loving. We can forgive. We can improve our relationships… We can change.

This year, starting today, I vow to myself and to God, changes will be made. I am not looking at an easy road ahead. I have some habits to break and new ones to make. I have some flesh to crucify. I am some time to give. I have some reaching out to do. I have some inconvenient love to show. I have some early nights to bed and some early mornings to rise. I have better eating choices to make. I have some physical activity to be endured. I have some better house keeping practices to instill. I have some listening to do. I have some purging of clutter. I have some better time management skills to work on. I have some ground to conquer. I have some victory to gain.

This isn’t just a New Year’s Resolution that is forgotten and unfulfilled, it is a promise. These are goals. I have written many down. And as more come to me, more changes that need to be made, I will write those down to. I am a work in progress, allowing God to mold and shape me into the person he wants me to be.

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In this trying time that we live in there are many things that can take our peace. Our job, the economy, relationships, and uncertainty with what the future holds to name a few. Some times I find it a struggle to hold on to the precious peace that God has gave me when I placed my trust in him.

I was talking with a friend last night about stress and how many times people focus on the everyday things in life, creating unnecessary stressful situations. They talk about the monthly bills as if they are new and unmanageable. Christians can get caught up in this habit also. In conversation with one another, the bills are due or the car needs washing or the lawn needs mowed and what a big deal each one is.

We don’t need to allow daily responsibilities to take our peace. God is our strength and we can go to him for help for every day things. We can rest in him to take care of our every need.

When I got home I read Philippians 4:6-7, Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

I was so encouraged to find this simple recipe to keep the peace of God that passeth all understanding. It is to not worry and to bring our petitions before God with thankful prayer. He knows our needs and has promised many times over to supply each one. The bills will be paid, relationships will work out, the strength and time will come to get the yard work done. I have a secret to tell you, My God in all his riches has promised to supply each need (Philippians 4:19). In this we can rest and remain at peace.

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