Happy New Year! Welcome 2023! We have been given a new day, a new year. What we choose to do with this new gift will make all the difference.
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.
Ephesians 2:10 – NLT
The gifts are gone from under the tree. Perhaps your tree is gone too. Still, the gift giving is not finished.
As we begin a new year, ponder this thought for a moment. “What you are is God’s gift to you.What you make of yourself is your gift to God” (Author unknown).
Ephesians 2:10 tells us that “…we are God’s masterpiece.” Another translation calls us the handiwork of God. No ordinary work of art, God put his best into you. He created you for something special, something no one else is uniquely positioned to do.
You were fashioned to bear God’s image (Genesis 1:27), created as a planting of The Lord for the display of His splendor (Isaiah 61:3). He knit you together in your mother’s womb. You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14-15).
You have a God given purpose. You may not be destined to lead the nations or find the cure for cancer, but you were created to bring goodness and light into this dark world.
Look at Ephesians 2:10 again. “…He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago”(Ephesians 2:10). You may feel antique today, but God has created you anew. You may feel small and inconsequential, but God sees you as glorious. You are His handiwork, His prized possession.
“Who you are is God’s gift to you.” You have specific spiritual gifts that the world is waiting for you to use. Your sphere of influence may be large affecting vast numbers of people, or it may be small, focused on the growth of your child. Your sphere of influence may change over the course of your journey, but your God given purpose is still present. There is no expiration date on it. You are still here, so God is not done with you yet.
God has given us a gift, those specific talents and attributes that are uniquely ours. Will we waste that gift, squandering it on worldly pursuits, or will we keep on going and growing, offering our unique gifts and talents in service to God?
You and I have the ability to change the world, one day at a time, one person at a time. We can spread a smile of encouragement. We can offer a helping hand. We can spread the love of Jesus. We can share our confident hope. We can be the people God created us to be and do the good work He planned for us long ago.
Unsure of your calling, your unique gift? Pray about it. Ask God to show you how to serve Him in this new year. “Who do you want me to see today, Lord? What would You have me do?”
If we begin 2023 with open eyes and open hearts, then surely we will open the door to a better year. Friends, let us be the reflections of the only Light that can dispel this present darkness. Let us give our gifts to a world in need of hope. For these words ring true. “What you are is God’s gift to you. What you make of yourself is your gift to God.”
Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose.
Philippians 2:2 – NLT
O God of Grace and Glory, we bow down before You in worship, thanking You for Your marvelous gifts to us. We are Your handiwork, each made for Your pleasure and Your good purposes. In this new year, help us to open our eyes to the needs around us, to open our hearts to give of ourselves in service to You, to open the door to a better way to live, filled with Your joy, peace, love and hope. Go with us, O God. Guide our steps. Keep us safe and well, walking in Your light.
In the Holy Name of Jesus, we give thanks and pray,
New Year’s Blessings,