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Summary: Looking at a new year with a fresh start and trust in God

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Looking at 2014

Philippians 3:12-3:21

Introduction-

The presents are all bought. Most have been exchanged. The only thing left is the clean up.

Getting back to normal. What I call normal may not be what you call normal and vise-versa.

Every year we make resolutions that most won’t be able to keep.

Weight loss, budgets, breaking of habits, restoring of relationships- top on our lists, usually forgotten within 30 days.

What do you hope for in 2014?

Hard to believe will be in 2014 already.

It seems just yesterday, we were worrying if Y2K was going to destroy the world computer system.

What about this past year? You know a lot of things have happened that we forgot about already.

Mandela death

Boston bombing

All the shootings, plane crashes, train accidents. We even had a meteorite injure 100’s in Russia.

Royal baby of Great Brittan, New Pope, and the Chinese land on the moon.

We had a city for the first time declare bankruptcy in Detroit, not to mention the scare that the US government shut down for over a week.

What do all these things have in common? We heard about them but we could do nothing about them. The outcomes could have affected our lives, but we could do nothing.

What has happened to you that you could of done something about?

What in 2014 will you do different than 2013?

Will you change the things that you are able to change?

New Year is always an opportunity to start fresh.

Start out well, but don’t usually finish well

We revert back to the way it was because it is the path of least resistance.

People think about where their life has taken them.

Think about what needs to be changed.

Think about goals. At the end, most just have a brain that hurts from all that thinking.

Optimist stays up all night to bring in the New Year

Pessimist stays up all night to make sure the old year goes out.

Which are you?

Text- Philippians 3:12-3:14

Apostle Paul compares life to a race- many places he uses athletic imagery to show us.

The first thing Paul tells us is to “take hold of the things that Christ has already taken hold of for us.”

Paul’s goals are Christ goals. He knows Christ will supply resources and strength to do what He is told to do. “press on toward the goal”

Taking hold of what God gives us and pressing forward when we are in a hard spot.

I believe there are some lessons we can learn from Paul to have a successful 2014

I. Each of us has a past (imperfect)

“Forgetting what is behind”

There is not one of us that cannot look at our past and find something that we are not proud of.

Something that we want to forget.

Some have walked with Jesus along time, but we must not forget where He has brought us from. We were not as good as we think we are.

Apostle Paul was no different!

Not many of us have to deal with persecuting the church of God. Killing believers and believing that God would be pleased with him.

He was a Pharisee, he quoted Scripture well.

He was religious.

His past was destructive. Truth was, he was religious, but God was not pleased with his actions. God tells us, Paul tells us- forget what is behind and move forward.


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