Top Ten Things you will not have to worry about in 2013:
1. The Bible will still have all the answers.
2. Prayer will still work for every situation.
3. The Holy Spirit will still move.
4. God will still inhabit the praises of His people.
5. The name of Jesus will still be powerful.
6. There will still be singing of praise.
7. God will still pour out blessings upon His people.
8. There will still be room at the cross.
9. Jesus will still love you.
10. Jesus will still save the lost.
We know God is for us as we let go of 2012 and embrace 2013. God has great plans for each one of us.
Jeremiah 29:11 (GWT)
“I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord. They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a future filled with hope.”
We have a future. We have a hope. We hold on to Jesus every step we take in this life.
We are embarking on a new year, 2013. As we look back at 2012 and wave “goodbye,” let us embrace the good and let go of any bad. Taking the good into 2013 is what we have to do, as we learn from any bad we may have faced. We have planted seeds in 2012 and now we are right at the threshold of the new. 2013 will be a year of blessings, increase, and what you have planted will have a great harvest. It will be a year of standing strong and pressing forward. It will be a year of not being afraid of man, but be in awe of God and His power.
Starting today, and for the next four Sundays in January, I will be preaching a series entitled; “2013 – A New Year For A New You!” Be expecting great things as you come and learn more of what God is going to do in 2013 and beyond in your life.
Let’s start today by looking back at this past year of 2012 and all that God has done. We look back not to bring discouragement, but to see where we have come and where we are going. It is good to evaluate and take assessments of where you are so you can prepare and plan for where you are going.
In 2011 we shifted in our thinking and how we looked at things. Shifts happened in the natural and in the spiritual. The number 11 means “transition” or “shift.” It prepared us for 2012 so that we could be complete and walking in the Godly authority He placed us in. Lately I have been seeing the numbers 11:11, or 111, or 1:11. Many times on my car clock, or my clock beside my bed, or on other clocks I have seen the time 11:11 or 1:11, and felt something in my spirit quicken. I was placed in a hotel room with the number 111 just a few weeks ago when I traveled to perform a funeral. I believe God was showing me to shift the way I have been thinking in the middle of this transition I have been in during 2012 and cresting 2013. You see Biblical numbers have importance and meaning. If we are open to new ways of God speaking to us, we will be surprised at all that He shares.
2012 is in the books. We can’t rewind — much as we’d like, we can’t go back and correct anything we did or didn‘t do. But we can reflect — and evaluate and — if we’re wise, make change.
2 Corinthians 5:17 (Amplified Bible)
“Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!”
When we are given a new beginning, or a new year, we need to embrace it. It is a gift from God. Embracing the new often means we need to let go of the old. Before we do, let us take a look at this past year (2012) and rejoice at the good, the bad, and maybe even the ugly!
Reflect – Evaluate – Make Change
1. We reflect on all that has happened in 2012 in our life.
Are you the same spiritually as you were a year ago, or have you developed a deeper relationship with God? Look at all the major events that took place this past year in your life. Have you taken the time to praise God for all He has done? It reminds me of the many songs sung after battles won in the Bible.
Song of Deborah – Judges 5:1 – 31
Song of Moses – Exodus 15:1 – 18
Song of Mariam – Exodus 15:20 – 21
Song of David – 1 Chronicles 16:7 – 36, 1 Chron. 29:1 – 19 (Prayer of praise), Book of Psalms (songs – “A Psalm of David”)
All of these songs came as praise and reminders of what God had done for them that year, or from generation to generation. We must also remind ourselves or reflect on what God has done for us. Not for building up our pride, but for recognizing our steps were ordered of the Lord. We see the hand of God that was flexed on our behalf.
Did God rescue you from something?
Did God provide when you had no hope of provision?
Did God sustain you when you experienced loss or regret?
Did you have strength to walk through something you never thought you could? This is God equipping you.
Did God’s favor go before you and you were granted something you never thought was possible?
Are you breathing? Then He gave you life today!
Do you have a place to live? Then God provided shelter.
Have you eaten? Then God provided the food for you to eat.
We can look at any tragedy in our life and see the negative, but it takes a person of character to not live in the negative, but focus on the positive God has done. There is always someone else in a harder situation then you are living in. Don’t feel sorry for yourself and bring that self-pity into 2013. No! Be aware of the good that is happening in your life and REJOICE!
When God provides, thank Him! When you see His hand of mercy, be humble and receive it! Live your life to please God and not your flesh. It is so much more fulfilling then living a life of complaining, criticizing, and murmuring.
2. We reflect on what we could have done differently.
If you did make choices that ended in a not so good result, be determined to do things differently this new year. Plan ahead. Be prepared (if possible).
a. Use Godly wisdom when making choices for your life.
If you don’t have a new year’s resolution, I have one for you. Read the book of Proverbs everyday for 2013. There are thirty one chapters. You can read a chapter a day. That way you will be reading the entire book of Proverbs each month for twelve months. You will be surprised at the wisdom you will receive and how your choices start to change for the better.
Here is a taste of some wisdom from the book of Proverbs to apply to your life in 2013.
Proverbs 3:5 – 6 (The Message)
“Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he’s the one who will keep you on track.”
Proverbs 4:23 – 27 (The Message)
“Keep vigilant watch over your heart; that’s where life starts. Don’t talk out of both sides of your mouth; avoid careless banter, white lies, and gossip. Keep your eyes straight ahead; ignore all sideshow distractions. Watch your step, and the road will stretch out smooth before you. Look neither right nor left; leave evil in the dust.”
Proverbs 11:5 (The Message)
“Moral character makes for smooth traveling; an evil life is a hard life.”
Proverbs 11:17 (The Message)
“When you’re kind to others, you help yourself; when you’re cruel to others, you hurt yourself.”
Proverbs 11:25 (The Message)
“The one who blesses others is abundantly blessed; those who help others are helped.”
Proverbs 11:28 (The Message)
“A life devoted to things is a dead life, a stump; a God-shaped life is a flourishing tree.”
Proverbs 13:18 (The Message)
“Refuse discipline and end up homeless; embrace correction and live an honored life.”
Proverbs 15:10 (The Message)
“It’s a school of hard knocks for those who leave God’s path, a dead-end street for those who hate God’s rules.”
These are just a few nuggets of wisdom we can apply to our life this year. Enjoy reading the Proverbs and your life will be richer and wiser for it.
b. If you have regrets, place them at the foot of the cross.
It is there where we receive God’s mercy and forgiveness. Most of our regrets are not sin we have done, rather they are expectations we had that were not met. Let them go and allow God to have the driver seat of your life in 2013 and beyond. Lay any regrets at the foot of the cross. It makes for a less stressful and bumpy ride.
3. We evaluate where we are today.
Are you happy where you are in life? Did 2012 give you what you planned for? If not, make the proper changes in your attitude and actions to bring different results for this new year. If you want different results plan differently!
What is your foundation? Are you building your life on anything but Christ?
“For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost?”
Ponder, my soul, over this very striking image of your Lord’s, concerning the divine life. The picture of a builder is most aptly chosen; for the Christian builder is building for eternity. And the figure of a warrior, which our Lord also joins to it, is no less so, for the battle is for life, and that life is eternal. Have you counted the cost? Have you entered upon the work? Is the foundation-stone, which God hath laid in Zion, the rock on which you are building? Pause and examine. Be the cost what it may; the loss of earthly friends; the parting with every worldly pursuit; the scorn, contempt, and derision of all mankind; indeed, the loss of life itself: if these come in the way of competition, are you ready to give them all up?-When you have answered these inquiries, go on, and see that your foundation be really fixed on Christ.
Count the Cost
“The Poor Man’s Portions”
Truly when we place our life on Jesus Christ, we will have a solid foundation, all other ground is sinking sand. When you evaluate your past year, if you see much turmoil, chaos, or strife, quit possibly you are building your year on the wrong foundation.
4. Change Your thinking and viewpoint.
In this new year, which God has given, if you want to have different results, you must plan differently. Where do you want to see yourself this time next year? How about in 5 or 10 years down the road? Don’t expect change to happen if you keep doing the same thing. Change only happens when we purposely make changes.
It might be the way you think is preventing you from change. We have to demolish old mindsets to embrace the new. Old mindsets will prevent us from obtaining our promise land. We need to shift in our thinking. Allow yourself to break out of the box of the mundane and step into the unknown or the new God has waiting for you. Seriously, it might just be a change of viewpoint and how you see yourself. Find out who you are in Christ and run with it.
Sometimes I have to say out loud, “God I refuse to be the old Kris, and how I thought, acted, and reacted. Lord give me a new heart and mind to think the way you think, and to do what You want me to do, so I can obtain what You want me to obtain in Jesus’ name!” Learn how to encourage yourself! Learn how to cheer yourself on to the new God has for you.
No one can bring change into your life, only you are the master of your thinking and behavior. A person could win the lottery and receive a billion dollars, but it will all be spent and be gone in a matter of no time if they don’t change the way they think and view life. They need to invest and make changes with the money or it will be all gone and their life will probably be worse off then if they never had won the money in the first place.
Habakkuk 3:19 (KJV)
“The Lord God is my strength, and He will make my feet like hind’s feet, and He will make me to walk upon mine high places.”
The Lord is with you and is empowering you for higher heights. Let’s say “Goodbye” to 2012 with a new mindset and way of thinking so 2013 will be the best year ever. The number 13 means “promised blessings” and God has promised many blessings for all of us. Let us be a people who have built our foundation on Christ and use God’s wisdom in everything we do and say. 2013 never looked brighter!
Your sister in Christ,
Pastor Kris Belfils