…work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at
work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure.
Happy New Year! It’s hard to believe it is already 2016! I remember when I thought the year 2000 would never really happen. The longer I live the more I realize that time marches on and stops for no-one. With a new year comes many new things. Some people choose to look back at the past year and remember the highs and lows. Others are happy to close the door on hardships that happened and move forward. However you stepped in to this New Year, I hope that it included thanksgiving and praise for what God has done in your life in the last year. I also hope that it includes excitement about the new things He has planned for you in 2016.
I have three sons and a husband who enjoy watching sports. I couldn’t tell you the names of any television shows that are currently running, but I can tell you what teams are in the playoffs! One perk of watching sports channels all day long is seeing the best and worst plays of the year. Each week commentators pick the top ten plays of the week and by the end of the year they have hundreds of amazing and comical clips from the sporting world. I have to admit, it was more entertaining and less depressing than watching the news highlights of 2015.
While our family enjoyed some laughs from the sports year in review, truthfully, most of the athletes are known for talent much greater than their worst bloopers. You don’t make it to the major leagues without hard work and determination.
Which brings me to another hot topic that arises this time every year – resolutions (only to be kept by hard work and determination). I’ve not made many resolutions in my life, mostly because those I have made I haven’t kept. You only have to drive by the local gym to see that many people have made exercise and healthy living their resolve for 2016. This is a very worthwhile goal and I applaud those who are striving to keep this resolution.
However, I would like to propose a different kind of workout for 2016, exercise for the soul. You don’t have to be a professional to start your workout – it’s designed for all levels!
And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love. 2 John 1:6
I run in the path of your commands, for you have broadened my understanding. Psalm 119:32
Lift up holy hands in prayer, and praise the LORD. Psalm 134:2
Let us know; let us press on to know the LORD; his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth. Hosea 6:3
I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:14
In other words, let’s get into God’s word. Let it push and stretch us in our walk of faith.
No one knows what 2016 will hold but God alone. I would like to share with you something I found on the dash of my sweet daddy’s truck that encouraged him to exercise his faith. I’m not sure where he got it so I don’t know who to credit, but I’m thankful that he left it there for us to see and encourage us in our walk of faith.
Exercise your faith by praising, seeking, worshiping and trusting God. Most of us will experience happy, difficult, quiet and painful moments this upcoming year. When you do, keep your focus on God alone, the One who holds you and your future in the palm of His hand. “Work out” your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you – for His good pleasure. His talent is much greater than your worst bloopers!