In speaking with some friends and family members I note a recurring theme: home organization; weight loss decisions; personal, work, and spiritual goals, etc. It seems January 1 of any year brings to mind an opportunity to re-do, re-start, re-organize, re-anything.
One friend is changing up their home filing system, grandson Konnor set a goal to run a 5k, Greg and I have plans to get together with an estate attorney and create an estate plan. No matter what the goal, it just seems like the beginning of a new year is the perfect time to plan for it.
Recently I’ve reconnected with someone close in age but who seems lightyears ahead in learning new things and challenging herself. My life looks sedentary and sedate in comparison. So I’m definitely looking at new opportunities in the area of hobbies, ministry, and personal growth.
But I imagine for many of us it will be hard to look ahead. Perhaps you’ve had a rough 2016 and the last 12 months were not what we were expecting or hoping for. And maybe this has resulted in losing the ability to look ahead, to set goals, or to dream.
Be encouraged. You are not alone; we’ve all been there at one time or another. And the Bible book of Philippians even addresses this in Chapter 3, verses 12-15a:
I do not mean that I am already as God wants me to be. I have not yet reached that goal, but I continue trying to reach it and to make it mine. Christ wants me to do that, which is the reason he made me his. Brothers and sisters, I know that I have not yet reached that goal, but there is one thing I always do. Forgetting the past and straining toward what is ahead, (emphasis mine) I keep trying to reach the goal and get the prize for which God called me through Christ to the life above. All of us who are spiritually mature should think this way, too.
With this in mind, now is the perfect time to seek God and His plan. Ask Him to help you set goals for the new year, then bravely move toward those goals. And a year from now you’ll be able to look back with satisfaction knowing you were able to forget the past and strain toward what is ahead.