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Look, Everything is New!

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Resolutions are at best a work of the flesh, whereas new beginnings are available each moment in Christ.

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With another year about to begin, people everywhere are making resolutions that will benefit them in some way.
If you’re like me, you’ve probably made your share!
Yet, as I grow older in the faith, I find that all this hype never really accomplishes much of anything, except perhaps inflating our own egos over our prevailing victories, if in fact there are any!
God gives to us a good word in the scriptures that if practiced regularly, would enhance our relationship with Him:
Galatians 5:22–23 NKJV
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Galatians 5:23 NKJV
gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
2 Peter 1:5 NKJV
But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge,
2 Peter 1:5–6 NKJV
But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness,
2 Peter 1:4–6 NKJV
by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness,
2 peter
2 Peter
Ideally, if every Christian exhibited self-control and committed themselves to it, there would be no reason for resolutions, there would be no regrets.
Yet, as ideally as it may seem, this is what we are called to!
Every new year’s resolution is but a distraction to our one primary call- to follow the Lord in holiness and worship Him in truth!
Our text this morning shows the correlation between God’s favor and our resolve to walk in holiness with Him.

I. To those that love Him, there is endless compassion.

A. Although Physically and emotionally we may suffer.

It is strange, but nevertheless true! We who are God’s children suffer greatly in this world.
In fact it is a right of passage it seems.
Philippians 1:29 NKJV
For to you it has been granted on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake,
There are some that suffer in greater measure than others, and some suffering is but a light affliction it seems, yet, all those in Christ do suffer at times!
But our affliction is only sweetened by the aroma of God’s compassion. And, that compassion only reaches it’s fullest potential when we are closest to the Lord!

B. Loving Him is the conditional side of grace.

Not that grace is somehow affected by human desire, but that the fruit of that free grace is love for God and man, which manifests itself in those who are born again.
In fact, the great commandment to love the Lord your God with your whole heart, soul, mind, and strength; and your neighbor as yourself, could not be accomplished by any human being outside the covenant of grace appropriated by Christ at Calvary!
The only way we can love according to the commandment, is through Jesus!
And, that’s what we mean by the conditional side of grace.
As our eyes and hearts have been opened to Him through grace, we are loving Him more and more each day, abiding in that love and realizing the compassion of God in Christ, that comforts us in every situation, until we can say as the Apostle Paul -
“For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain!” (Phil.1:21)
And because His compassions fail not -

II. To those following Him, everyday is a new beginning.

Because I am following Him, I know that when I fail He lifts me up and sets me back on the foundation of faith.
In following Him I am in His good favor, and thereby experience the fullness of joy!
I am in perfect fellowship with Him, and so when I stumble there is only new beginnings not defeat or guilt.
I start each day as though it was the first of my spiritual life.
His blood cleanses me from all sin and allows me to walk in the Spirit, free from the entanglements of Satan’s nets.

A. If we fall, we get back up.

Proverbs 24:16 NKJV
For a righteous man may fall seven times And rise again, But the wicked shall fall by calamity.

B. If we are losing the day to day battle in the flesh, We remind ourselves of the victory.

Romans 8:37 NKJV
Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.

C. following is an ever present action.

Matthew 4:19 NKJV
Then He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”

B. Because we follow Him, we get back up when we fall.

Our following can not be something we did once upon a time, as we share spiritual stories with friends.

C. Are you His?

There is no boasting in past achievements!
We are called to follow Him always, wherever that takes us, until He takes us home.
Jeremiah wrote Lamentations with tears, as he wept over the destruction and captivity of his people Israel. There was nothing good in what he wrote about.
Except that he reminded Himself through revelation for us, that through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed completely, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness.
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