Can you believe that it’s nearly the end of 2018? Wow, this year has sure flown by. 2019 is almost upon us and the sense in our hearts is that the Lord is releasing a new beginning; a fresh start. It’s a brand-new season full of prophetic promise and potential. You can feel the shift as it’s happening. New things are upon us.
A new beginning is just like a new baby being born. When that baby is born, loads of changes and many adjustments are needed. It’s the start of something new and it brings to an end many other things. Some of these changes will be easy, some more challenging; but a new season requires new things from us all.
The Bible also speaks about new beginnings. In Isaiah 43:18-19 we read, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. 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.”
In order to embrace the new beginning, the new season, the fresh start in God; God is asking that we let go of some things from our past season(s). The reason for this is that He wants us walking into the new without hindrance, limitation or baggage. We can’t move forward unless we do what the apostle Paul encourages us to do in Philippians 3:13, “forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead”.
The question then is what do we need to forget and let go of in order to embrace the new in God? It will mean different things for different people but here are a few possibilities:
As human beings, we have a tendency to hold on to the past. Many things have happened in our past, both good and bad. Many of those things influence our futures resulting in us walking with a limp. Our past experiences can affect the lens we view the future with. They can affect the filters we use when we are faced with change and new things. Our dirty lens and clogged filters can distort our view of the future. Often that lens and filter is one full of regret, disappointment, pain and even guilt. This results in us carrying a burden which affects how we run our race. But the Word says that we are to “cast our burdens onto Jesus for He cares for us” (1 Peter 5:7). If we don’t, we continue to live in the past and cannot embrace the new.
This is a big thief of our new beginning and future. Edward Young says, “procrastination is a thief of time.” Do you realise why? Time never stops, it doesn’t slow down and is always moving. Once time is gone, it can’t be regained. Time is therefore a resource that can never be replaced. Procrastination is full of excuses. You might say, “I will tomorrow or next week; or someday, sometime in the future”. But according to Isaiah 43, we need to start NOW; with no delay or excuse. Get rid of everything that hinders and so easily entangles you and embrace your new beginning - now! Life is short and none of us know how much time we still have left on planet earth. Let’s not waste time; it’s so very precious!
Prayerlessness equals powerlessness. Jesus was full of power because He kept prayer central to His life and ministry. He did nothing without prayer. Prayer is the key to power. The early disciples new that; that’s why they asked Jesus to teach them to pray. They saw what a high priority prayer was to Jesus and how it affected the outcome of His ministry. When we cease to pray, we cease to advance. Don’t wait until you feel like praying. Prayer isn’t a feeling, it’s a choice. Choose to pray, whether you feel like it or not and you will advance, taking back ground from the enemy. And when you pray, keep at it, because prayer will release more of God’s power into the new.
Passivity simply defined means to slob around, to be lazy, idle and to lie about. It’s another word for doing nothing. Passivity makes you indecisive. Passivity results in avoidance, excuse making, and causes you to neglect your disciplines. Eph 5:16 tells us to “make the most of our time because the days are evil.” Let’s activate our gifts, our disciplines and ourselves and keep on moving forward with the Lord.
Phobia is another word for fear. Fear of the new, fear of change, and fear of the unknown causes us to not walk into new beginnings and seasons. If we are going to walk into the new now, we need to deal with fear and let go of our fear. It means making a conscious decision not to be afraid. It’s choosing to trust that our Lord loves us and only has the best in store for us. His plans are to prosper us and not to harm us; to give us hope and a future (Jer 29:11-13). Fear limits us; it hinders us; it contains us. Faith in a loving God, who only has good things in store for us, means that we trust Him with the unknown new beginning because we know He only has good in mind. If we live in fear, we will be handicapped and that will affect the capability and the possibility of the brand-new beginning and season.
God is a God full of plans and purpose. You and I need to discover His plan and purpose and do everything to follow it and walk in it. There’s a saying, “if you fail to plan, then you plan to fail.” If you are unclear of the plan or you are distracted from the plan, you will end up following someone else’s plan; be it another person or the enemy. That spells failure. Get on board with God’s plan and purpose for this new beginning and the season ahead.
This new beginning is one full of new things. It’s a future full of the potential of new blessings, new opportunities, new testimonies and new breakthroughs. Resolve today that you will let go of whatever holds you from embracing the new. Decide today that you are letting go of everything that hinders you from entering the new. Make every effort to get on board with God’s great plan and purpose; you won’t regret it!