23(Isaiah 43,16-21) A New Beginning
We have experienced many setbacks and failures throughout our lives. Sometimes we allow these mistakes, these setbacks and failures to enslave us to the point that we never enjoy the full Christian life that God has given us to enjoy.
We have a dead-end job and we feel stuck thinking, “I went into the wrong career and now there is nothing I can do about it.”
We get married, only to find the marriage is a failure. It may end in divorce, or it may survive as a tragic, unending chain of arguments and fights.
We say something to a friend, and then are ostracized from them for the rest of our lives.
And yet, Christ said in John’s gospel:
John 10:10 “…I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.”
2Co 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”
The good news is that God says, “I want to do something new in your life. I want to give you a fresh start, a new beginning.”
This news is a major element of our Christian faith – to start fresh and have a new beginning with God.
At the beginning of a new year it is customary for us to think of this as a time of new beginnings, a time for new resolutions. But the truth is that with God anytime is a time for a new beginning.
I. God overruled in the affairs of men and gave their forefathers a new start (Isaiah 43:16-17).
A. God takes us to places of dependence, then creates new beginnings, new blessings.
II. Don’t look back! (43:18).
A. It’s one thing to remember the past successes, but another to live in the past.
§ Our faith is often limited by what we have experienced in the past.
§ Israel was where they were because of a history of failures and disobedience.
§ Yet God says don’t look back at the past.
B. He makes all things new.
§ When we come to Christ, we become a new creation. All things become new. (Isaiah 42:9).
C. God is a creator-King (43:15). He makes new things; He is not in the box we try to place Him in.
§ He can do in your life what you have never seen done before.
III. God is only getting started! (43:19)
A. Once God delivered Israel by making a path through the water, now water will make a path in the desert. God is not predictable!
B. He does not deliver the same way each time. How he heals one is not how He may heal you.
C. Can’t you see it?
IV. Become a blessing to others (43:20)
V. You were created for God’s praise. (43:21)
A. Why would He leave you to die in the desert, when He desires for you to bring Him praise?
B. Our desert experience.
Step 1: Quit making excuses.
It is always too soon to quit. The Bible tells us to quit making excuses, admit when it’s our fault and get on with life. I’ve discovered that people who are good at making excuses are rarely good at anything else. They spend their energy thinking up reasons why they can’t do what they are supposed to do.
Step 2: Act in faith!
New beginnings come to those who step out in faith. To change anything in your life by the power of God takes faith. (Matt 9:29)
Mat 9:29 Then He touched their eyes, saying, "According to your faith let it be to you."