A new year is here. Just a month ago, we were coming off of Thanksgiving and putting our attention toward Christmas. Now, we have crossed the threshold into a new year – a new opportunity – a new chapter and verse. I realize that for some it is merely a changing of the calendar. And while that is true, I must say that in my personal journey with Jesus, I have used each new year to inventory what God has done, how God has spoken, where God has led me, and then, with His will at the center, evaluate and analyze my response.
Nothing different this year. I still believe the new year offers us the invitation to reflect, revive, refresh, and renew. The 4 “R’s” that can, and will, allow us to go deeper with Jesus.
This past September, we had our 6th Annual Renewal with Brother James Spruill, who has been generous enough to make the trip from Nashville, TN to Beaufort, NC since 2006. I am not sure if James and Mary know how much of a blessing they are. This past year, one of the most profound accounts of our time together came when I was with them in their RV, out in front of the church. It was a Friday afternoon (as they had just arrived the night before) and we were trying to find an outlet for them to connect to. After getting that done, James invited me into his RV, where we talked for a couple of hours.
On this particular day, James was talking and I was listening. It does us well to recognize when God puts us in positions to listen and learn. This was one of those times for me. Anyway, James made a statement that has stood out in my mind and heart since he first made it. We were talking about life, ministry, and what God is doing in these days. And to the very best of my recollection, James offered this: “You know, sometimes it’s good to remember that much like this RV, God makes our windshield for where we are going so much larger than the rear-view mirror for where we’ve been.” There is so much wisdom in that statement. Profound, really! Thank you James for being sensitive to God’s voice and for sharing.
I believe that if we aren’t careful as people, as Christians, as families and churches — that we can dangerously allow history to contain us. We remember “the good ole days” and “how things used to be” and totally miss what God is saying, and doing, in the here and now. It’s not that we don’t savor the past and the goodness of God in giving us memories — it’s just that we can’t stay there. On average and as a conservative estimate, your windshield is 50 times LARGER than your rear-view mirror. Ponder that.
In 2012, is God in your day, today? Is He in your future? Is He still on the throne of your life? Resolutions are a good thing. But so many focus on self-help goals and habits. Maybe this year, if you are making some hopeful projections of the year to come, you can start with things that will improve your relationship with God? Developing that prayer life — getting back into His Word each day — making some new friends at church — giving yourself for the betterment of someone else — winning your neighborhood to Christ. Whatever it may be, let Him be your Guide.
More to come.
God is not done.
We are in a new day, with His blessing, and we must make the very most of it!
Happy 2012 family and friends,