Be Steadfast In the New Year

In Psalm 51:10, the psalmist asks the Lord to renew a steadfast spirit within him.  The psalmist, David, is crying out to the Lord for forgiveness and cleansing because of his great sin.  As we look back at 2012, we see some things we are not proud of or some hard things we went through that caused our faith to waiver.  The meaning of steadfast is, “resolutely or dutifully firm and unwavering.”  We want 2013 to be different; we want to begin with a fresh start.  The Message, which is the Bible in contemporary language by Eugene Peterson, puts Psalm 51:10-12 like this:

God, make a fresh start in me,
    shape a Genesis week from the chaos of my life.
Don’t throw me out with the trash,
    or fail to breathe holiness in me.
Bring me back from gray exile,
    put a fresh wind in my sails!

When we ask him, God will give us a fresh start.  He will take “the chaos” of our lives and reshape it into something new and fresh if we will just allow Him to.  Verse 12 in the New Living Translation puts it like this:

Restore to me the joy of your salvation,
    and make me willing to obey you.

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The catch is we have to be “willing to obey” Him.  Too often that part is the hardest to accept.  We want a fresh start, but we want it on our terms.  So here are a couple of questions as we look to the new year.  Are we willing to obey whatever He shows us needs to change in our lives in order to start fresh?  Are we willing to let Him reshape our lives into something even better?

As we close out this year and look ahead to 2013, it’s our prayer the Lord would enable us to be steadfast in the coming year.  Whether we are celebrating a new home, a child getting married, taking care of aging parents, or whatever it is we are going through, we pray that we will be steadfast to follow Him, and at the end of 2013, our mouths will declare His praise (Psalm 51:15).

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