“But forget all that— it is nothing compared to what I am going to do. For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland…. Yes, I will make rivers in the dry wasteland so my chosen people can be refreshed. Isaiah 43:18-20
We are on the cusp of a new year, and many of us are more than ready to put 2020 behind us. It has been a hard year for so many of us. We have seen death and devastation in so many areas of life. The promise of a new year brings about many emotions, including hope for a better year.
For me, there are other new beginnings. Next week starts the beginning of a new job. I wasn’t looking for a new job—I love my current job—but it kind of just fell into my lap. I have all the nerves that comes with change, but I am really excited that I might be able to regain some balance that has been missing from my life.
I’m also hoping for new beginnings spiritually. I was just contemplating the ways I would like to grow spiritually. My current schedule has made it difficult to spend the time with God that I want to. I am hoping that my new more normal schedule will allow me time to sit with my Savior and soak in His presence.
My heart is bursting with hope about the new beginnings that are before me. My heart is full of excitement as I move into a new season of life. I long for the new things that my Father wants to do in me and through me. I want to see the refreshing that my Father promises to His chosen people.
Maybe you are in a similar situation, looking at the dry wasteland that stretches before you and longing to see the Father make rivers of refreshing. Maybe you are wanting to make 2021 the year you see new beginnings, where you see the pathway God is preparing. If so, will you pray with me?
Father, my heart has been heavy and burdened. It seems that there’s nothing but wasteland stretching out before me. The wilderness is long and burdensome, and the journey through it has been difficult.
Yet, we know you are the God of new beginnings. We know you are making a way in the wasteland. We know you want us to put the past behind us and see the new beginnings—the new thing you want to do in us and through us. And that’s what we want too.
I will put flesh and muscles on you and cover you with skin. I will put breath into you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’” Ezekiel 37:6
Give us eyes to see the way you are making for us, stretching out before us to lead us to the promised redemption you are creating for us. You are the God of redemption, the one who makes all things new. You are the God of the resurrection who brings the dead back to life. Breathe life into these dry bones. Restore the beauty of your life here on earth.
And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart. Ezekiel 36:26
Father, take my heart and make it yours. You have told us that you replace the heart of stone with a heart of flesh. Where my heart has become hardened, let your Holy Spirit begin a work within me to change me from the inside out. I don’t want to hold back any part of my heart or mind; I want you to take it all, to have your way within me. I surrender it all to you.
Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Ephesians 3:20
We know that you are at work all around us—even when we can’t see it. Your heart is good. Your character is good. You are good. There is nothing in you that cannot be good so we know you must be working all around us. We must trust your heart when we can’t see your hand moving for our benefit.
Because we know you are working, we cling to your promise that you will do above and beyond all we could ever ask, hope or imagine. What’s even better is that you promise to do these amazing things with the same power that is at work within me! That mighty power – your all powerful being – is working in me! What a beautiful promise to know there’s nothing you can’t do in me or through me!
Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.
So put to death the sinful, earthly things lurking within you. Have nothing to do with sexual immorality, impurity, lust, and evil desires. Colossians 3:2-5
Father, this life is yours. I want my life hidden in Christ. I don’t want this life to be mine at all but instead your life lived through me. I know that requires the crucifixion of the flesh. Whatever is in my life that is not pleasing to you, convict me. Remove it from me. Help me to deal severely with anything that would separate me from you. You in me and through me. Your life in mine and through me.
Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. Colossians 3:12-14
Help me to take off the old life and put on the new life, the life of love, mercy, kindness, gentleness that you planned for your people. Take my old habits and mindsets and make me brand new. Grant me a new beginning in every area of my life.
Thank you, Father, for the promise that all things are made new in your time. I pray you would help me to lay hold of the life you have for me. May I be faithful to take hold of the new beginnings you have promised. In Jesus name I pray, amen.