I think you need the same person who endured in 2018 to have focus in 2019. I need her. I need the lessons that came in 2018. - Sarah Jakes Roberts
The above quote is from a message called, The Sequel, by Pastor Sarah Jakes Roberts. (I truly enjoy her ministry.) I began this entry with that particular quote because hearing her say those words, affirmed that I haven't quite lost my mind regarding the way I've been thinking about the New Year. Rock with me for a bit, will you?
As a rule, I, like many others, wave goodbye and hello with great glee on December 31 of every year at 11:59 PM. We all part ways with the old (usually with some disdain) and welcome the new wholeheartedly. The older I become, I am often taken aback by how quickly we discard old and embrace new.
But what if 2018 was a launching pad? What if 2018 was a year of "Class is now in session”, experiences, specifically designed by God as your prerequisites to 2019?
If that's the case we cannot, in fact, we dare not write the entire year off. Quite the contrary, it would behoove us to gather every single lesson and blessing from 2018 and leverage it to make 2019 our best year yet. What if one of the reasons we repeat things year after year after year is because we are so quick to chuck the deuces to our pain instead of finding the purpose in it? What if one of the reasons we stay in these cycles, is because we are too exacerbated by our trials to allow ourselves to become empowered by them?
I cannot speak for you, but in 2018, God fixed somethings for me. In 2018, I understood God to be Abba Father in a way I hadn't before. In 2018, I watched God flip every L I took to a W. ( L=Loss, W=Win) J
In 2018 God targeted my root system and destroyed roots of rejection that had been plaguing my life for years. In 2018, God disbanded the gaggle of lies that run with rejection. You know the lies that tell you all that you are not and remind you of everything you cannot do and/or didn't do. Yeah, those. He not only disbanded those lies, but he obliterated them and replaced them with the truth of Jesus which is--I am, you are, accepted in the beloved. Because I am accepted in the beloved, rejection has been rendered powerless in my mind, in my heart and ultimately in my life. Because rejection has been rendered powerless, I am less likely to live in fear. Because I am less likely to live in fear, I am more likely to execute against my dreams, walk in my purpose and/or carry out my calling.
Because rejection has been uncovered, I know how the enemy shows up in my life. I can recognize him from afar off and enlist the assistance of my Daddy through prayer. I don't know about you, but without those lessons I would be sitting here on January 4,four days into 2019, screaming New Year, New Me and still tied to negative patterns.
In 2018 Abba's movement in my life changed the trajectory of my thoughts. I wouldn't dream of throwing that experience away. So, no, thank you, SJR! It is not New Year, New Me.
It's a New Year and the Same me. Same free me, same delivered me. Same whole and being made whole me. Same warrior me. It's the same me that worked out her soul salvation with fear and trembling all of 2018 and it is because of that work, that I stand ready to revel in the newness of 2019.
My prayer for us is that we reflect, recuperate, rebound and rock out. I pray we reflect upon 2018, recuperate the lessons, and rebound with those lessons and rock out 2019, period. New Year. Same us.
Let's use what we've learned to co-create w/God and make 2019 a great year.