It’s an hour before the New Year.

Looking back on 2014, I can say one thing for sure: it was full.

This past year has been an incredible learning experience for me. Growing older never comes without its lessons, trials, joys, and challenges.

God has not given us another day and another year for no reason. Rather, he uses our time for a grand purpose. I think back this year to the ordinary days I experienced where nothing “significant” happened. It was routine: work/school, friends, food, sleep, prayer. I think about the big days where my whole life seemed to be impacted. These were the life lessons, the big answered prayers, seeing others come to Christ, being humbled more than ever by the knowledge that God was using me for something. Of course, there were the bad days of struggling with shame, my mind playing out my sin over and over, people failing and me failing and nothing going right; these were the days I was mad at the world and God seemed far off. These moments cast shadows and reminded me that this is not a simple war of flesh and blood (Eph 6:12). 

The Lord uses our time. Things happen for a purpose, a metanarrative that defies our postmodern culture that refuses to believe in a sovereign plan. God is seated on his throne despite the good days, bad days, and the average days. 

There is no such thing as time wasted in the hands of our Lord. 

Take comfort and joy in knowing that there is a plan. God is using each moment to teach, reveal himself, and bring glory to his name. Romans 8:28.

Stuff doesn’t just “happen.” This next year isn’t going to just “happen,” either. There is Someone who is holding each sun before releasing it to rise, and the new dawn of 2015 is no exception.

I’ve been messaging with Ian the Theologian and talking New Year’s resolutions. It’s an interesting concept, setting goals for oneself. Remembering the Planner in our plans is the number one priority (James 4:13-17). 

Keeping all this in mind, I think my New Year’s resolutions would include working on my book and reshaping it a bit, along with seeking opportunities for future ministry options and taking better care of myself physically and spiritually. However, my overall “resolution” is a continual one, a prayer that I can know and love Jesus more. I want to be closer to the One who holds my life and time in his hands.

He is the one I trust and dedicate the New Year to, always. I fail, I stumble, I trip, I hate, I lie — yet, he forgives and reminds me that my identity rests in him, not in my past self or in my sin. Jesus loves me, this I know. Jesus is the Way, for this year and the next.

God, I look to you. My life is in your hands.