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New Year’s Marching Orders

Happy New Year to you and your families. It’s time to make all the resolutions and promises for 2022. Exercise, lose weight, work harder, etc. The list can be long and it is sometimes hard to know where to begin. I rarely participate in this process, because I tend to forget and abandon these kinds of commitments. From Franklin Graham comes a great reminder of what should be our resolution and celebration, as we begin the new year.

Scripture Reading: Acts 1:4-11

Shortly after His resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ physically ascended into Heaven right before the eyes of His disciples. “Why do you stand looking into heaven?” two angels asked them. “This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven” (Acts 1:11).

As we await His return, we have work to do. He left us with marching orders—to make disciples, obey His commands, and live boldly for His glory. Heading into this new year, let’s check our priorities and make sure we haven’t drifted from Christ’s urgent mission.

The world around us seems to be growing darker—rejecting God’s ways and embracing sin. But the Bible challenges us to choose godliness in these uncertain days. “The grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ” (Titus 2:11–13).

The Christmas season is filled with celebration as we remember the Savior’s first coming. New Year’s Day, we can rejoice in the promise of His triumphant, second coming. In the meantime, I pray that we will “shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life” (Philippians 2:15–16). We can be faithful, by the power of His Spirit, to honor Him and join Him in His mission of redeeming men and women, boys and girls, to Himself—until He comes!

Pray

Father, thank You for the sure promise of Jesus’ return. Help me to live my life in light of that reality and may Your Spirit work in me to bear fruit for Your name.

—Mike