It’s that time again, when most people are thinking about the New Year and the resolutions that go along with it. Resolutions like,

I want to lose 20 pounds.

I’m going to learn to play guitar.

This is the year I’ll learn how to get along with my family.

(I’ll be honest, one of these is on my personal list!)

But the New Year also offers us a new chance for something deeper.

Are you moving forward with life, and everything is actually going well, but you still feel empty inside? It seems that when we are walking through dark valleys, it is easy to draw close to the Lord. But when we are no longer in need, and life is going as it should, we tend to come out from under His shelter. If the valley is safe and the road is sure, we are no longer desperate for His wisdom and help.

It’s during times like these, when I am walking without him, that I find myself empty. I find that I had left not only my refuge, but also my God. It’s in these times of plenty that I sense the deep urgency for renewal. For it is not the goodness of my circumstance that brings me peace, joy, hope and purpose, but only God. He is for us, and has much to bless us with, not only in times of trouble but also in times of abundance.

So let’s renew our minds and return to his covering shelter.

Just thinking about this makes me feel lighter. I feel full of hope, fresh insight, and motivation. Unlike a new year’s resolution, where I desire to change something about myself or my circumstance that I am unhappy with, renewal is about getting a fresh perspective on my life – from the inside out. And not just any perspective, but God’s perspective. It’s looking up to God, ignoring all else, and aligning my heart to him. That is where, through times of plenty and times of less, I will be at peace. I will be renewed.

If you need a place to start, simply open up your Bible to the Psalms and begin reading. Begin praying. Take time, for it is needed, to once again seek out the Lord, and he will answer. He will return to you, his beloved.

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