10 Bible Verses to Bring in the New Year

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Happy New Year!!!  The new year always represents a fresh start with new goals and new year’s resolutions. It also involves letting the disappointments of the past year go and moving forward in trust of Him and with no fear. I don’t know about you, but I want to squeeze every last drop out of my time here on earth that God’s blessed me with while spreading every word and act of kindness and encouragement that I possibly can this year!

Of course, we can’t go it alone, and the good news is that we don’t have to! He is always with us, protecting us, loving us, and making a way for us. He’s so enamored with us, and I hope that in the new year that if you haven’t already, you will come to grasp just how fond of you He truly is.

In the spirit of the new year, I’ve compiled 10 of my favorite bible verses that I like to meditate on on New Year’s Day, and guess what? I’m gonna share them with you!!!

1.) 2 Corinthians 5:17 ~ Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature. Old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

2corinthians5-17

2.) Isaiah 43:19 ~ See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

isaiah 43-18-19

3.) Jeremiah 29:11 ~ For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

jeremiah

4.) Proverbs 23:18 ~ There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off.

proverbs 23-18

5.) Lamentations 3: 22 – 23 ~ Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

lamentations

6.) Ezekiel 11:19 ~ I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh.

ezekiel 11-19

7.) Micah 7:7 ~ But as for me, I watch in hope for the LORD, I wait for God my Savior; my God will hear me.

micah 7-7

8.) Isaiah 40:31 ~ But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

isaiah 40-31

9.) Psalm 90:12 ~ So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.

psalm 90-12

10.) Proverbs 16:9 ~ In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.

proverbs 16-9

No matter where your at in your journey in the new year, you can rest assured that God has you in the palm of His hand and knows exactly what you need to become the best possible you and experience all the blessings He has in store for you! You are loved, friends, with a deep and unfathomable love. Take rest in Him in the new year and watch as His plans for your good unfold! Happy New Year!!!

happy new year

Karma vs. Grace

karma vs grace2

In the past few weeks, I’ve had three different friends ask me about scenarios involving something they did or something that someone else did, and they were curious about my opinion as to what it meant karmically for the person involved. My response was the same in all three instances: “I don’t believe in karma, I believe in grace”.

Before we get started, let me preface this post by saying that this is based solely off my experiences and my belief. By no means am I any sort of expert. In fact, it’s a good day when I get a question from a friend and I have an answer other than “I don’t know”. However, what (or rather who) I do know is Jesus Christ, and I know that He is good, and He is always in my corner, regardless of the mistakes I’ve made in the past, the mistakes I’ve just made today, or the mistakes I will make in the future.

All that being said, let’s get back to the subject at hand: Karma vs. Grace. Yeah, like I said, I don’t believe in karma, I believe in grace. Let me explain. I’ve seen people who are some of the most loving and kind people I’ve ever met go through absolutely horrendous circumstances, and I’ve seen people do terrible things and get rewarded for those things. If karma were at play, these people would supposively be getting what they deserve?  Sorry, that just doesn’t add up to me.  So, no, I don’t believe in karma. Otherwise, let’s face it, we would all be fairly screwed, right? I mean, nobody’s perfect…we all make mistakes.

So, that explains my thoughts on karma, but why do I believe in grace? That answer is easy. God loves me and He loves you. Personally, I know I fall short and fail Him probably on a daily basis. There’s not a person on this earth that hasn’t screwed up at some point in their lives. And yet, guys, He loves us SO much – how is this even possible? I’ll tell you how – grace. God’s grace, His love, is unending and unfailing – it doesn’t matter what we’ve done, He loves us more than we can possibly fathom, He delights in us always, and when we mess up all He wants is to shower us with grace.

Ephesians 2-8-9

Let me try to put this into perspective. Parents, if your child just royally messed up and made a huge mistake, wouldn’t you want your child to feel safe enough with you and trust you enough to come running to you in this event? You certainly wouldn’t want them to be scared, worried and feeling guilty all by themselves. Whatever they did may make you upset, but it certainly doesn’t change your love for them, and whatever it is, you would want to help them work through it supporting them, loving them, protecting them, and just guiding them in a better direction. In the exact same way, when we mess up, He just wants us to come running to Him, like the prodigal son, so He can hold us in His loving arms and reassure us that He made us, and what He makes is beautiful. To reassure us that He has washed us and made us clean…just like that *poof* – sin erased, sin forgotten, we’re forgiven, and we’re held.  We can breath in His love, we’re safe, and we can trust.

Wait, though, can it really be that easy? Yeah, it can. That’s grace. That’s God. That’s good. Maybe this is why it’s so hard for many of us to accept this gift of grace. It’s too easy. We live in a society that says the only way to gain something is to work for it, to give something up for it…nothing is free. We think we must have to do something to earn this, but no guys, He did all the work for us.  All we have to do is accept this gift, to accept Him. That’s it. Done deal. What an awesome gift, grace.

handout of grace, brennan manning

Some of you may be thinking telling people this may be risky. I mean, does this “grace” concept mean that people can just sin as they please, because they will be forgiven. Does it mean we don’t have to do good for others?  Well, it’s true, there is risk involved. However, I can tell you from personal experience that once you’ve truly experienced the love and grace of God, once His light has seeped into the cracks of our brokenness illuminating all of our dark places, once you see that you can trust Him, that He is your loving Father who is especially fond of you, you’re not going to want to sin anymore – you just won’t.  Not only that, but after feeling God’s tremendous love for you, it will be hard to keep it to yourself.  You will want to serve others and share that love, because you will be bursting at the seams with it!

Let me be clear, not wanting to sin and not sinning are two very different things.  For instance, the women in my family (myself very much included) have a bit of temper.  It takes quite a bit for it to come out, but when it does, watch out, actually watching out isn’t enough, probably better to just run…no really, run away…fast. 🙂  Anyway, reason I bring it up, is because anytime that my temper has gotten the best of me, and maybe I’ve said something I shouldn’t have or raised my voice when I shouldn’t have, it’s not that I wanted that to happen.  It’s just that I’m a work in progress, and even though I know the things I have to work on and want to change them, that doesn’t mean I won’t stumble along the way.  Thank God for grace!

We all sin, we all fall short, we all fail, but hey, guess what? God already knows all the mistakes you’re going to make, and He already has a plan in place to pick you up, brush you off, and make that mistake into something beautiful. Probably not what we deserve as I know, personally, I’ve made some doozies in the past, but that’s the beauty of grace – we don’t get what we deserve, we get unmerited favor, we get grace. I don’t know about you, but I’ll take that over karma every single time!

1Peter 5-10

Wishing you a day full of grace!  God bless you!