Time for a Fresh Start

Happy New Year: A Fresh Start

Is anything too hard for the Lord? — Genesis 18:14

It’s a brand-new year. It’s the time of year we start thinking about making changes. This year, rather than writing a quick list of resolutions that we’ll likely forget before February, maybe we should take a different approach. This is a good time for each of us to ask ourselves,

What do I want to be different this year?

Sit with that for ten minutes. Let your heart surface and then… take it to Jesus in prayer. Lord, come into this. Show me the way. I will often ask God for His “theme” over my new year: Jesus, what is the theme of this year?

I do this every January, and it has proven a mighty rescue many times over. Usually, Jesus says one simple thing. One year I heard, “Love.” All through the year, I found myself needing to return to the simple truth of love. Another year it was, “Restoration,” and that was the year I took a short sabbatical and sought needed restoration.

Ask Jesus, What is the theme of this year, Lord? And when He speaks, write it down! Post it somewhere you will see it often. In very big letters.

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A Heart for His Kingdom

God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart. — Ecclesiastes 3:11 NLT

The thing you are made for is the renewal of all things.

God has given you a heart for His Kingdom — not the wispy vagaries of a cloudy heaven, but the sharp reality of the world made new. This is one of the most important things you can know about yourself. Did you know this about yourself? When was the last time you told yourself, as you looked in the mirror in the morning, Good morning; you have a heart for the kingdom? This explains so much; it will be such an enormous help to you. It explains your anger and all of your addictions. It explains your cry for justice, and it also explains the growing hopelessness, resignation, cynicism, and defeat.

If you will listen with kindness and compassion to your own soul, you will hear the echoes of a hope so precious you can barely put words to it, a wild hope you can hardly bear to embrace.

God put it there.

He also breathed the corresponding promise into the earth; it is the whisper that keeps coming to you in moments of golden goodness. But of course, the secret to your unhappiness and the answer to the agony of the earth are one and the same — you are longing for the Kingdom of God.

You are aching for God’s promise of the restoration of all things.

Jesus — restore my hope this year. Renew my hope that You are going to renew all things, including my life.

Excerpted with permission from Restoration Year by John Eldredge, copyright John Eldredge.

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Your Turn

This is our restoration year, the year of new beginnings. What is your theme for the year? Have you asked Jesus? Come share with us on our blog. We want to hear from you!

John Eldredge

John Eldredge is the director of Ransomed Heart™ in Colorado Springs, Colorado, a fellowship devoted to helping people discover the heart of God. John is the author of numerous books, including Wild at Heart, Epic: The Story God is Telling, Walking with God, Fathered by God, Waking the Dead, Desire, and Love & War (with his wife Stasi). John and Stasi live in Colorado with their three sons.

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