I can see her vividly with her hands raised, her head bowed and eyes closed as she shook her head from left to right and right to left praying and declaring that 2016 will be a different year and will be her year of showing forth. That was me 364 days ago on a cross over night like this.
This year has been full of ups, downs, tears, laughter, friendships, love, pain, hope and lots more but I am more grateful that I am here today ready to declare the word God will give His servant over my life and my household.
Doing my own little evaluation of my life in 2016, I have learnt a lot and out of these lessons, I made a must-do list for myself in 2017 which I want to share with you to day so that we can both experience peace, tranquility, joy and the gifts of God that He has lined up our way this new year.
The list comprise but not limited to the following;
- Forgive easily: I was hurt by so many people in 2016 but one thing I found out during these last few days of the year, was that holding on to grudges will only make you bitter and restrict the hand of God over your life; you become resentful and unable to receive from God. In this New Year, many people will hurt you knowingly and some will do so unknowingly but one thing you must learn to do is to forgive as easily as you breathe.
- Pray more: this is something I kind of lost touch with in these concluding days of the year but which I need to correct in this New Year. You have to pray everywhere; in the bathroom, on the road, in the office, before a meeting starts, while you are driving, just pray everywhere and anywhere as the place of prayers cannot be overemphasized. A childhood song just came to my mind now while writing and the lyrics says “…Jesus started with prayers, and ended with prayers…” If our Lord and Saviour prayed at every opportunity He got, why can’t we?This is a habit we must cultivate in 2017 in order to bring to fruition God’s plan over our lives.
- Love God more: To excel and succeed in 2017, one must first and foremost love God more than you think you already do. Go out of your way to please Him; serve in His vineyard, give to His projects, seek and spend time in His presence like your life depends on it (it actually does), pay your tithe, give your offerings, attend bible study and love your neighbours as you love yourself.
- Love Your Neighbour as You Love Yourself:No one can say he loves God that he cannot see but hates his neighbours that he sees. Go out of your way this New Year to show love to that man, that woman, that boy, that girl whom you have never said a word of greeting to. Take time out to sincerely care to listen to the answer you get when you ask the popular question; “how are you?” Call people you haven’t seen in ages, visit your friends and also visit your church members, extend a hand of care to them. Don’t get tired of showing love; as much as you love yourself, also love that person who may not be able to reciprocate that love.
- Choose Your Words Wisely:In this New Year, there is no denying the fact that many people will put you in uncomfortable situations andwill say hurtful things against you but in all these be mindful of what comes out of you. Carefully, prayerfully and wisely choose your words even when you are angry. Like a popular saying goes; “be careful what you say when you are angry because what you will destroy will be more than what caused your anger”.
- Let go of Pride/Ego: God opposes the proud but gives more grace to the humble. To excel in this New Year, we must firstly take away any garment of pride because all through the bible there was never a time God commended a proud man rather he was brought low because of his pride. Desist from anything that will cause you to have the ‘I have arrived syndrome’ because that is pride in its entirety.
- Laugh regularly:Finally, at every opportunity you get take your head back and laugh like no one is watching. Cherish and seize every happy moment as those will make up your memories for the year. Get angry less often and laugh more often as this is the secret to healthy living.
From us at the Fresh office, we say a HAPPY NEW YEAR to you.
Go, break forth and breakthrough in 2017!