One Great Way to Prepare For The New Year
Two Things Are Critical
As you embark on the journey in the year 2020, two things you do are critical.
- The CHOICES you make.
- The ACTIONS you take.
One – Choices You Need To Make Everyday
1. Choose to get excited about each new day.
Psalm 118:24 English Standard Version (ESV), “This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”
- Each day is a gift from God.
- Make a daily choice to rejoice.
- Get yourself fired up for having another day of life and be glad.
2. Choose to be thankful.
Colossians 3:15 (ESV), “And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.”
- Allow God’s peace both into your heart and to rule your heart.
- It’s hard, if not impossible, to be thankful and miserable at the same time. Choose to be thankful.
- Thank God daily for your daily bread.
3. Choose to be positive.
Philippians 4:13 (ESV), “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”
- Don’t say, “Good Lord, it’s morning” but say “Good morning, Lord.”
- Make sure you get up on the right side of the bed.
- As the late Zig Ziglar used to say, “Get rid of your ‘stinking thinking.’”
4. Choose victory over defeat.
1 John 5:4 (ESV), “For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.”
- Remember the words of the old hymn, “Faith is the victory.”
- Never forget it is the Lord who goes with you to battle the daily enemies and challenges. (see – Deuteronomy 20:4)
- God gives us the victory through the Lord Jesus Christ. (see – 1 Corinthians 15:57)
5. Choose to live above the level of mediocrity.
Colossians 3:23-24, “Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.”
- We are to work heartily.
- Our work honors God.
- Remember, in any endeavor of labor, our work honor’s God.
6. Choose to put the other person first.
Philippians 2:3 (ESV), “Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.”
- The late Christian motivational speaker, writer, and Bible teacher Zig Ziglar (a Baptist deacon and member of my church) said, “You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want.”
7. Choose to have hope.
Job 13:15a (ESV), “ Though he slay me, I will hope in him (God);”
8. Choose to keep on keeping on.
- I had an Associate Pastor named John West that frequently admonished all to “keep on keeping on.” He would say, “Keep trying; keep doing what you are doing. Keep doing your best; never give up and keep on keeping on.”
- Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said in 1967, “You don’t get to the Promised Land without going through the Wilderness. You don’t get there without crossing over hills and mountains, but if you keep on keeping on, you can’t help but reach it.”
Two – Choose to take ACTION by accepting Christ as Savior.
The only way we can really have a winning 2020 is to know Christ as Savior. Do you know Him as your personal Savior and Lord? Here is how to be sure.
Man’s Problem: Romans 3:23 (ESV), “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”
Man’s Penalty: Romans 6:23 (ESV), “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
God’s Provision: John 3:16 (ESV), “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
God’s Promise: Romans 10:9 (ESV), “because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
To accept Christ as Savior – A Prayer of Salvation: “Lord Jesus, I confess to you I am a sinner. I believe that you died for my sins and that God raised you from the dead. I ask you to forgive me for my sin right now. Thank you for saving me and for giving me eternal life. In your name, I pray. Amen.”
I originally wrote this last section in 1988 as an article titled “Our Need and God’s Provision” using the KJV as the Bible reference. It was published in “Motivators for Sunday School Leaders” by the Baptist Sunday School Board (now Lifeway Christian Resources).