This Year Will Be Different - Devotional

Read This: “Look, I am about to do something new. Now it begins to happen! Do you not recognize it? Yes, I will make a road in the desert and paths in the wilderness. The wild animals of the desert honor me, the jackals and ostriches, because I put water in the desert and streams in the wilderness, to quench the thirst of my chosen people.” (Isaiah 43:19-20)


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Think: As last year’s calendar is put away and a new one put in its place, we anticipate all that the coming months will bring. With a fresh start, we plan to make up for what we didn’t do so well last year and set new goals and resolutions to make this year better than last.


But maybe for some of us, this excitement can quickly turn into discouragement. The promise to exercise three times a week is broken half way through the second run. The healthier diet proved too cumbersome to keep up. And waking up early to read the Bible... Well, better save that one for next year since there’s already so much going on this year. Our list of resolutions can become a list of failures, a reminder of our shortcomings and lack of discipline.


While failure is always disheartening, the good news is that God is bigger than our calendars. Our culture may put special significance on January first, but God sees it the same as any other day. He created time and cannot be confined by it. Every day, even every minute of every day, is another opportunity for a fresh start with God. Lamentations 3:22-23 says, “The Lord’s loyal kindness never ceases; his compassions never end. They are fresh every morning.” His forgiveness, mercy, and love are constant. We might give up on ourselves as we struggle through the same issues over and over, but God is ever patient and kind. He never gives up on us.


While it’s always helpful to have goals, you don’t have to wait a full year to start over. If this year’s resolutions fall flat, don’t wait until next January to renew them. With God, you have a new beginning every day.


Ask: What are your goals for your character and how do you plan on seeing those through?


Pray: Ask God to work in your heart to mold you more into His image every day and to give you the strength and courage for a fresh start when you feel like you fail.

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