Archived Story

A new year, a new me in 2013

Published 5:19pm Monday, December 31, 2012

What a privilege to write the first column of the new year.

This is when people look back at where they have come from, and out of regret comes resolution – to reach higher, go further and achieve more with the time they have been given.

There’s really only one thing I want out of 2013, and that’s to grow closer to God.

I became a Christian in 2000 when I was 10 years old. It’s one thing from which I have never looked back.

It’s a dangerous thing to say you’re a Christian sometimes. If you don’t walk the walk when you talk the talk, you can reflect poorly on the church and on the Lord. I know I have done that in my past.

But with God’s grace, the opportunity is always there to move forward, so that’s what I plan to do.

I’m going to grow closer to God.

A lot of things are built into that. By growing closer to God, I can help strengthen the church. I can encourage my brothers and sisters in Christ. I can build up my marriage. I can become more involved in personal outreach and evangelism.

Spiritual growth is a hard thing to see sometimes. While I sometimes fret because of lack of knowledge, and while I am often pricked in my heart because I know that I can do more for the Lord, I am also confident that I have grown in his service and that I am a better Christian today than I have been in the past – as much as any of us can do better when compared with the light of the glory of God.

I have a long way to go, though, in God’s service, and I want to give him praise for giving me another year in which to do that.

Our Sunday night lesson was about being a vessel for God – about being a channel of blessing through which he can reach others.

I don’t know that I’ve always been that.

But I’m going to work harder – to love more, to give more, and to have more faith.

God’s grace is available to all who want it, and when people start talking about blessings, that to me is the biggest one.

Philippians 3:13–14 says “I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

That’s my resolution for the new year.

If I can do that, everything else will fall into place.

James is a staff writer for The Outlook.