With a full week of the New Year behind you, what has changed in your life from last year? What resolutions have you determined to keep? What resolutions have you already broken? How many New Year’s resolutions involved your spiritual life and involvement in the church? Last week we pondered what the year 2022 would be for us. Let’s pose a few more questions to direct our minds to our own work in the Lord’s kingdom.
Will 2022 be the year you take the great commission seriously? How many Bible studies did you have with family or friends last year? Are you known by your coworkers as a person who takes their spiritual life seriously and also shows an interest in their spiritual well being? Are your conversations with your family, friends, coworkers more about secular things or are they Bible centered? Jesus admonished His disciples, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen” (Mt. 28:19-20). Do we spend more time debating/affirming baptism and less time actually going and teaching? Will 2022 be the year you actually take the great commission seriously and bring a soul to Christ?
Will 2022 be the year you approach the elders and ask, “What can I do?” Members of the church are often heard complaining about what is not being done or what is not right. Will 2022 be the year that you approach the elders and say, “What can I do to help the church.” Perhaps you can help the church in physical matters or it may be that your skill-set is better suited for the Bible class or other spiritual things. All members of the church should be involved in the work of the local church in some way; will 2022 be the year you approach the elders and say, “Put me to work.”
Will 2022 be the year that you put the past behind you and move forward? The apostle Paul said, “Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before” (Phil. 3:13). Sometimes we allow past failures to keep us from being the best we can be now. Imagine if Moses, Peter, or Paul allowed past mistakes to keep them from doing what was needed to be done! Not a one of us is perfect. We all have sinned and come short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23). But in Christ, we have forgiveness and the promise of God that our past sins and iniquities will be remembered no more (Heb. 8:12). We would do well to begin 2022 with Paul’s attitude: “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Phil. 4:13). Will 2022 be the year you leave the past in the past and stand in the strength of Christ?
Will 2022 be the year that you remove the distractions from your life that are hindering you from being the best you can be for the Lord? One of the greatest questions ever asked Jesus was, “Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?” (Mark 10:17). After enumerating various commands of the law, Jesus ultimately admonished a young man, “One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me” (Mar, 10:21). This young ruler was attentive to the law, but distracted by his wealth. His wealth was the most important thing in his life; it stood between him and true devotion to God. Perhaps it is not wealth that hinders you but recreation, career, hobbies, family, politics, education, or general involvement in worldly affairs. Will 2022 be the year that you remove those things that stand between you and God so that you can save yourself and be the most effective in the Lord’s work?
The year 2022 will be for you what you make it to be. It may be another year of mediocrity. It may be a year that you take a step backward. It may be the greatest year of your life. It may be the year that you evaluate yourself, your abilities, your work and involvement in the Lord’s church and become truly what you have always desired to be — a true worker for the Lord. It is up to you. What will the year 2022 be for you?