Awww New Years.
A time of year where we can reflect on where we have been, leave it behind, redirect our targets, and start fresh aiming in the right direction.
I have done all of the above. I even have a couple of, dare I say, resolutions!
However, what has been on my heart this year above all was how Jesus allows us to do just that. Far more than any date on the calendar ever could. When we invite him into our lives, we are new. We can reflect on where we have been. Leave our sins behind, and redirect our targets toward him. He is our directions. (so glad this is figuratively speaking or that could have gotten weird)
It doesn't have to be a new year, a new day, or even a new hour. He allows you to come to Him for renewal any time. Any moment.
How amazing is that?!
Well, coincidentally (ha-ha) I am re-reading Victory Over the Darkness by Neil T. Anderson as this new year passes through. (If you haven't read it...do it. It's amazing. You'll thank me later. ;) Upon my reading tonight I thought to myself...wow, why do I need to write a thing I could just copy everything in this chapter?!" but then I remembered it would be plagiarism and that would be bad.
The book is about "Realizing the power of your identity in Christ." The chapter I was reading tonight focuses on our perceptions of ourselves compared to God's perceptions of us. He states that "you must believe you are a Child of God, to act like you are a child of God."
The section in "Victory Over Darkness" called "New Life Requires New Birth" spoke deeply to my heart tonight and inspired the challenge I am about to present you with but first a few quotes from his book to inspire you to read it for yourself.
"A Christian, in terms of his or her deepest identity, is a saint, a spiritually born child of God, a divine masterpiece, a child of light, a citizen of heaven. Being born again transformed you into someone who didn't exist before. What you receive as a Christian isn't the point; it is who you are. It is not what you do as a Christian that determines who you are; it is who you are that determines what you do. (see 2 Cor. 5:17; Eph. 2:10; 1 Pet. 2:9,10; 1 John 3:1,2)."
"People cannot consistently behave in ways that are inconsistent with the way they perceive themselves. You don't change yourself by your perception. You change your perception of yourself by believing the truth. If you perceive yourself wrongly, you will live wrongly because what you are believing is not true. If you think you are a no-good bum, you will probably live like a no-good bum. If, however, you see yourself as a child of God who is spiritually alive in Christ, you will begin to live accordingly. Next to a knowledge of God a knowledge of who you are is by far the most important truth you can possess.
The major strategy of Satan is to distort the character of God and the truth of who we are. He can't change God and he can't do anything to change our identity and position in Christ. If, however, he can get us to believe a lie, we will live as though our identity in Christ isn't true."
Pretty good stuff huh? It gets better. The list below is who God says we are.
It. Is. Empowering.
|(If you would like a PDF version of this sent to your e-mail please let me know)|
Mr. Anderson's challenge in the book is my challenge to you. Read the list below twice a day for two weeks! I will share how it has changed me and I want to hear how it has changed you! Let's start this new year pointing our arrow in the right direction together.
The book says it best. "The more you reaffirm who you are in Christ, the more your behavior will begin to reflect your true identity."
If we gain nothing more than a better understanding of who we are in Christ, we will have gained an irreplaceable treasure. The truth about ourselves through God's eyes can and will unlock doors in our lives we didn't realize were closed.
Will you accept the challenge??
Comment, e-mail, or Facebook me to let me know your in!
(*For the record, I was in no way paid to write this the book is just literally THAT awesome.)