I love a clean slate and starting fresh. Whether it is starting a brand-new calendar at the beginning of a year or decorating a bare room. The possibilities are endless and I can let my imagination and creativity fly. Contemporary? Traditional? Shabby Chic? Country? Eclectic? I can design it into anything I want it to become. Too often we hang on to things from our past. We let the clutter of what is behind us define and affect who we are today. But did you know that you can have a clean slate? That you can become “brand-new”? You can start the New Year free from bondage and guilt.
We just celebrated Christmas and the birth of Jesus Christ. God sent his only son, Jesus, to this earth to be our Savior and to die on the cross for us so that we could have a clean slate. He died to wash away our sins; He bore the punishment of our mistakes for us. We don’t have to let our past cripple us. We don’t have to live in guilt and shame.
One of the worst lies that I have ever believed is that I don’t deserve to be forgiven; I am not worthy of a clean slate. Then one day I realized that by carrying my burdens alone and not letting go, allowing God to forgive me (or forgiving myself) I was basically saying, “Jesus, what you did for me by dying on the cross was not big enough to cover my sin. The crown of thorns you wore was too small. The beatings were not brutal enough. The sacrifice you made was nothing compared to what I have done.” The reality of what I was implying broke my heart. There was no way that I was going to minimize the greatest act of love ever committed. On that day I laid down my burdens, I forgave myself, and the freedom that followed brought an unexplainable joy.
As time goes by and I inevitably make more mistakes, I often have to stop and remind myself of the realization that I had. Since 2011 is coming to a close and we are getting ready to embark on a New Year I don’t want to bring any baggage along on this new adventure. I want to forget what is behind me and move forward with expectation of what is to come.
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:12-14
This year I challenge you to view your mistakes as stepping-stones rather than stumbling blocks. Let all of your choices, good and bad, be learning experiences that push you forward rather than hold you back. For we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him and have been called according to His purpose.
You are more than the choices that you’ve made,
You are more than the sum of your past mistakes,
You are more than the problems you create,
You’ve been remade.
‘Cause this is not about what you’ve done,
But what’s been done for you.
This is not about where you’ve been,
But where your brokenness brings you to
This is not about what you feel,
But what He felt to forgive you,
And what He felt to make you loved.
You’ve been remade
Let’s start 2012 off together with a clean slate!
The Possibilities are ENDLESS!!