New Every Morning

The year 2020 is over—2021 has begun. We have turned the page on our calendar and, although the year is fresh, we face the reality that not everything is new. We are still in a difficult season.

I encourage you on this New Year’s Day to take a deep breath. Settle in.  First, reflect on this eighth day after celebrating Christmas, which has special significance.

Today: Reflect on the Name

In the Gospel of Luke, we read, “On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise the child, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he was conceived” (Luke 2:21). On this day, our Savior was circumcised and named.

Today, take time to reflect on the name given to the Christ child: “Jesus” meaning “the Lord saves.” In every moment of each day, Jesus offers us salvation. In Him we can find release from fear, discouragement, and whatever else that holds us captive.

Speak the name “Jesus” and find freedom for today. “Jesus”—the name assigned by the angel as a sign of our salvation—is also the Name at which every knee is destined to bend (see Philippians 2:10–11).

Today, take the opportunity to renew your intention to live in a manner worthy of His Name throughout this new calendar year

Draw Near

On Sunday, January 3, our Alliance 40 Days of Prayer begins. To participate, sign up here. I encourage you to find ways to travel this road of prayerful meditation with others. During your personal devotion time, consider incorporating the Lord’s Prayer each day (Matthew 6:9–13), reminding yourself of His faithfulness to provide what you need each day (“Give us today our daily bread,” verse 11).

On Wednesday, January 6, The Feast of Epiphany, or Three Kings’ Day, is celebrated. On this day we rejoice that those foreign and far away were invited to draw near, believe, and worship the newborn King. Let’s immerse ourselves once more in the story of Jesus, drawing near with eyes to see and hearts renewed so that the light of Christ within us will shine brightly for those around us.

Keep Quarrying

Our journey through 2021 has just begun. God has new mercies for us each morning. Don’t miss out!

In his book of reflections, In the Midst, John Stumbo writes, “To all my friends who are in a trial that God hasn’t yet removed with one toss, keep quarrying.” In doing so, you will unearth treasures that can only be discovered through process (see “One Shovel at a Time,” pg. 118). Take one day at a time with Jesus.

Keep reading. You will find treasure. Here are a few declarations spoken by people of faith throughout Scripture to get you started: Job (Job 1:21); Jeremiah (Lamentations 3:22-26); Paul (2 Timothy 4:16-18, Philippians 4:12-13); and Peter (1 Peter 5:10).

Keep singing. You will find strength. Sing the songs of faith. Here are links to two of my favorites worship songs—one old and one new.

Keep believing. “His mercy extends to those who fear him, from generation to generation.” (Luke 1:50).

Our journey in this New Year. One day at a time; new mercies every morning.