[The following devotional was written by Wildwood Community Church Student Pastor Jonathan Holmes and is a part of our 2014 Advent Devotional Guide. We will be posting a devotional each day on this blog between November 30 – December 31, 2014.]
Reflecting by Jonathan Holmes
This is the last day of the year! Where did it go? As we celebrate bringing in the new year, let’s take a moment and reflect back on a busy year!
- What was the greatest thing that happened this year?
- What was the hardest thing that happened this year?
- Who is someone that made a big impact on you this year?
Take a moment and reflect back on the entire Advent season. Whether you read one or thirty-one, spend time reflecting on what you learned. If you wrote in a journal or took notes on your phone then read through some of those.
- What is one thing that you learned through celebrating the Advent season?
- What is one passage of Scripture that made an impact? Read that passage again.
As you reflect look at ways that God has provided for you in this past year. Thank God for providing in all of these ways. Reflection is important for us, because it allows us to understand and see clearly how God is working in and through us. Søren Kierkegaard said, “Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.” We understand life by reflecting on the past, but since we always live moving forward let’s talk about the unique opportunity we have today to set some goals or resolutions for the start of the new year tomorrow.
Here are a few ideas to help you set a New Years’ Resolution that stick:
- Keeping Life Simple – Instead of starting something new and fresh, try a resolution to quit or spend less time doing something.
- Make an Impact – Choose to do something that will make an impact for the Kingdom of God. Consider mentoring someone this next year. Consider reaching out to someone as a friend. Consider inviting someone new to church on a weekly basis.
- Let Others In – Make a resolution with someone. You wouldn’t even believe how much easier it is for your resolution to stick around longer, if you let someone in to do it with you or simply to keep you accountable.
Today is a unique day as we both reflect on the past and dream of the future. Celebrate today what God has done and rejoice knowing that He is going to do even more in and through you this next year!
- Confess ALL of your sins to God. Seriously lay it ALL out there.
- Your sin doesn’t define you, your relationship with God does.
- Now walk away knowing that because God has forgiven you of ALL of them you can live for Him.