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FIRST-PERSON: God makes new ways possible

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. (BP) — Much to the chagrin of critics, the Bible is a relevant document that is both holy and helpful. Spanning 50 generations, composed by 40 different writers, and covering three continents, the Bible is anything but old.

God proclaims His unmatched ability to make all things new throughout the passages of His inspired Word.

This was true concerning Israel’s checkered past. Even though there were periods of blatant disobedience and sin, God forgave Israel. Even when there was hardship and trouble, God would provide. He made all things new in His time.

Isaiah 43:19 says: “Behold, I will do something new, Now it will spring forth; Will you not be aware of it? I will even make a roadway in the wilderness, Rivers in the desert.” This verse records God’s promise to deliver Israel from the yoke of Babylonian captivity. Just as He had provided for the first exodus from Egyptian oppression and its pursuing army, God would do so here, promising that the Babylonians would go from being conquerors to being the conquered.

As you step into a new year, realize that God desires to work in your life in similar ways. He wants to bring deliverance into your life. He wants to end the reign of strongholds and struggles with sin in your life. He wants to thwart the evil that is around you and break the chains that are holding you down.

January is a perfect time to begin to renew your trust in God’s ways — or express your initial trust in Him. In order to do so, you will need to make some necessary changes, which include addressing the secret areas that you do not share with anyone. Perhaps those secrets are causing you a great deal of shame right now.

In repentance, surrender those struggles to God and trust Him for a new beginning. This is necessary whether taking the vital step of surrendering your life to Jesus as your Lord and Savior or regularly turning to Him whenever forgiveness is needed. And when you are “confessed up,” always beware of pride because, as Scripture states, pride comes before a fall (Proverbs 16:8).

Remember this: The Bible isn’t an outdated book of stories; rather it is a history of well-chronicled events surrounding God’s desire to bring newness and blessing to His people. Let that be the desire of your heart in 2016. Seek and pray for spiritual renewal and blessing. May God bless you as you walk in the wisdom of His counsel.