20 Jan A Season of Newness
By Karen Krolak
I love how a new year brings so much hope! There’s something amazing about an empty calendar just waiting to be filled with family plans, gatherings with friends, events, and travels. Those last few days of rest after the holidays give me time to reflect on God’s faithfulness over the last season and dream of what is possible in the next.
For 2018, I decided to follow a Bible reading plan that encourages writing down the selected Scripture passage for each day, taking a few extra minutes to prayerfully consider the verses, and listening for God’s voice as you write.
And, I can’t get past the passage from Day 1.
“Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old.
Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.”
Don’t get me wrong, I have continued with the plan; but, every day that I copy out another passage, I am still drawn back to that first day, looking up another word or another phrase, my heart stirring as I soak it in.
“Remember not…nor consider…”
As the days of December ended, I remembered events from the last year, how I saw God at work in me and around me. But, with every victory or blessing I recalled came thoughts of the things that didn’t change—mistakes I had made, missteps I had taken, and things I had wanted to happen that didn’t happen. I could feel discouragement and frustration wanting to take hold.
Then came these words: “Remember not…nor consider.”
God doesn’t want me to wallow in what I thought didn’t happen or dwell upon mistakes. Recall His goodness? Yes. Remember that He had been with me every step? Of course. Consider His faithfulness? Always. But, not with my gaze turned upon me and my limitations! Instead, with my eyes fixed solely on Him and His presence.
“I am doing a new thing.”
A fresh, new thing—that’s what He does. Always creating, always building, always making clean and new. I don’t have to worry about repeating mistakes because He is always making and remaking me, with new mercies for each day in front of me.
“Now it springs forth.”
Not later or eventually, but now! The moment God speaks, everything in heaven and on earth must respond. Everything in me—in my earth—must respond to His voice. And, it springs forth, sprouts up, grows abundantly and fully—multiplying from the good seed of His Word sown in me. My goals and dreams for this coming year, planted in the soil of my heart, will begin to sprout and grow as His voice speaks life to me.
“I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.”
He Who is the Way-Maker promises to do just that—make a way. And it’s not for me to randomly stumble upon; He establishes it for me in the midst of my wilderness, those areas in my life that look wild and uninhabitable. He makes streams and rivers flow into my desolate places, bringing life, renewal, and hope. Not only is He the One Who makes a way, He Himself is the Way.
As I continue to immerse myself in all God is revealing to me, I realize that even Jesus experienced a wilderness period in His life. The very next step on His journey after His own baptism and hearing the approval of His Father in heaven was to follow the leading of the Spirit into the desert. Through temptations and hunger, His path through the wilderness was the same as ours: through the Word. Jesus, the Word made flesh, needed that very Word to speak life into His own desert.
And, so do I.
This is my prayer for this season of newness:
Lord, I choose to not consider past mistakes or dwell on what didn’t happen; instead, I fix my eyes on You. You are doing a new thing—in me, in my family, in my marriage, in my relationships, in my work, in my finances—and it springs forth now! You are making a way when all else around looks hostile and wild, when things look dry and barren. Your words are the light for my path and journey following You! You are the Way-Maker! Give me eyes to see and a heart to perceive all that You are doing. You are my Way!