We find ourselves in the final week of January, it has been very cold with snow. Think back to 2013, what kind of year was it? Was it good or bad? Were there any good changes in the world? Was it a year of difficulty? Would you like a fresh start?
As we continue the adventure through 2014, let's do it with enthusiasm and faith. Maybe 2014 will be a new beginning for you; perhaps you or a family member will receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
Maybe this will be the year you confess your sins and rededicate your life to Jesus Christ. 1 John 1:8-10 says, "If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives."
This is an excellent opportunity to stop looking back at our faults and failures and start looking up to Jesus. The writer of Hebrews states in chapter 12, verse 2, "Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."
What would it be like if this year your prayers are answered? Maybe strained relationships in your family will be restored. Quite possibly you could conquer your negative attitude, or get out of debt. Perhaps God will restore your health, or your marriage.
What if this year we saw great revival through the city of Weirton and all across the United States, and throughout the whole world? What if we spoke the Word with boldness, and were filled with the Holy Ghost? Revival would make this a year of reconciliation where all barriers would fall.
What if nobody is willing? That one of the biggest burdens in churches today. How long has it been since you shared the Gospel with a friend, neighbor, or co-worker? What if this year, you started witnessing and soul winning?
This is also the time of year when we make resolutions. Do you want a deeper relationship with God? We must be strong in order to succeed, and willing to resist temptations. Remember, 1 John 4:4 says, "You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world."
So why not make 2014 your best year ever? You may think it is impossible, but I want to remind you, there is always hope. Luke 1:37 says, "For nothing is impossible with God."
These things can happen, but it begins with you. Let faith remove the limits, and claim all God wants to give you. Will you rededicate your life to Christ? What a year of possibilities this could be. Will you do your part? God did His part when He sent His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to die on the cross to redeem your life. Will you accept His gift, the gift of eternal life?
Once you have received Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, you can over come all obstacles in 2014 and receive your fresh start; because He overcame death when He rose again from the dead. That's what will make 2014, a great year! God bless you!
("From the Pulpit" is a weekly sermon provided by the clergy members of The Weirton Ministerial Association)