Celebrating New Year’s Eve as an adult isn’t as exciting as it was when I was younger. I’m not sure if it’s my new work schedule which forces me to go to sleep between eight and nine on weekdays or I’ve lost enthusiasm and luster of the newness of a brand-new day. While reading words from the prophet Jeremiah, I was reminded how quickly sadness can be replaced with joy. In the passage below, Jeremiah transitions from bad news to a message of hope.
My soul has them continually in remembrance and is bowed down within me. 21 But this I recall and therefore have I hope and expectation: Lamentations 3:20-21.
Depending upon how bad of a day, month or year you are having, God’s promise of grace and forgiveness is encouraging to any sinner. Despite his numerous missionary trips, the apostle Paul still considered himself one of the greatest sinners of all, 1 Timothy 1:15. The closer that some believers get to God, the more their sins are laid in plain sight. While the perfectionist in me still causes me to beat myself up from time to time, meditating on God’s love and nature gives me hope for tomorrow.
It is because of the Lord’s mercy and loving-kindness that we are not consumed, because His [tender] compassions fail not. 23 They are new every morning; great and abundant is Your stability and faithfulness. 24 The Lord is my portion or share, says my living being (my inner self); therefore will I hope in Him and wait expectantly for Him, Lamentations 3:22-24.
Perhaps, the ideal manner to start a brand-new day is simply emulating Jesus’ early morning practice in Mark 1:35. Although you may not be a morning person but taking a walk before you pray is a great way to clear your mind from the worries of life. Back in college, I ran three to five miles a few times a week to refresh my mind before returning to complete my homework. As 2023 continues to unfold, may the Holy Spirit guide you to develop a special time with God daily so that you’ll be eager and excited to put the new into a brand-new day.
by Jay Mankus