From the Pulpit – A fresh start on your life

From the Pulpit is a regular column that is free to all churches in the readership area.

As we begin this New Year we all have various emotions and feelings. We may be excited about the prospect of a new year, new challenges with our work, new personal goals or maybe some new dreams of what you want to accomplish. It feels good to have a new beginning or a fresh start.

You might have had the experience in the past of working on a project with lots of ideas, but as you went along you soon lost the excitement, and you may have given up. Or you may have started a new project – made some mistakes and had to begin all over again. These can cause frustrations that will keep you from trying anything new.

What kind of ideas could you try this year? What about reading a new book? Why not begin to study the Bible with some friends?  You will be surprised what you might learn. Maybe you could discover a new faith by attending a church with other believers? When is the last time you had a real talk with God?

One of the hardest things to do is to start attending a church when you haven’t gone for many years. You might not have ever attended the church, or know the people; you don’t understand what is taking place, and you may feel awkward or out of place at first.

So as we begin this New Year I have these questions to ask you –

How is your relationship with God? Are you on speaking terms? How is your relationship with Jesus? Do you know him as your Saviour and Friend? You can begin this year with a fresh new start.

In a Bible verse in Isaiah 43:18, The Lord says, “Forget about what has happened before. Do not think about the past. Instead, look at the new things I’m going to do.” God is saying in this verse – ‘Forget about what’s happened before. Don’t think about the past. It’s over. The book’s closed on it.’

God is more interested in the future than He is in what’s happened in the past. When we come to God to ask for forgiveness, He wipes out all our past sins. He forgets them – erases them – throws them away – doesn’t bring it up again.

There is one verse in the Bible I want to leave you with and it is found in the New Testament – 2 Corinthians 5:17 – “When someone becomes a Christian, he or she becomes a brand new person. He is not the same anymore, a new life has begun.”

Victor Koop is pastor of the Ashcroft Evangelical Free Church

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