Summary: Go into this new year with Gods plan, Purpose, and provision.
NEW YEAR PROMISE
New Year’s 2012
English Standard Version (ESV)
11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
I read a humorous and thought provoking bumper sticker the other day. It read, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.’
Beginning now and lasting till at least April, we will be inundated with commercials, enticing and encouraging us to make serious life changes.
• Changes in diet and health
• Changes in lifestyle and exercise
• Changes in finances
And so, people are making resolutions or promises to make positive life changes.
What’s your resolution for 2012? Here is a list of the top ten resolutions that are made each year
10. Get Organized
9. Help Others
8. Learn Something New
7. Get Out of Debt
6. Quit Drinking
5. Enjoy Life More
4. Quit Smoking
3. Tame the Bulge
2. Fit in Fitness
1. Spend More Time with Family & Friends
A friend of mine, posted three positive resolutions on facebook:
1. More Bible wisdom, less human wisdom
2. Laugh and let laugh
3. Love. Nuff said
The point being, Love and laughter are the spices of life...so embrace them wherever you can get them!
So how have you done so far? Will you make any promises to yourself this year.?
IN as much as it is wise to plan and set goals for yourself, it is even more important that your plans are in alignment with the plans that God has for you.
English Standard Version (ESV)
11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. 13 You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.
This is a wonderful refrigerator verse that we love to memorize and quote. But let’s take a step back and consider the reason and purpose of this Divine promise.
We’ve heard it said that God loves us and has a wonderful plan for our lives. It’s easy to agree when we like the plan.
But sometimes, God’s plan turns out to be different than what we were thinking. Some of you began 2011 with a positive attitude confidently claiming the promises God has for your, your family and your careers. But then, the rug got pulled from under your feet.
You may be happily married with two kids. You have no intentions on having any more.
But one day, you come home from work. And your wife says “Guess what? I just came back from the doctor. And we’re going to have two more kids! Isn’t this a blessing? Praise the Lord!”
And you reply, “Honey, I need to sit down.” Sometimes, God’s plan is different than what we were thinking.
Or maybe you have a job that you really like. A job that you’re good at.
But one day, the boss says, “John, we need to make some changes. We’re going to have to let you go.”
And you go home and say, “Lord, what is happening? I thought I was where you wanted me to be! I thought I was doing what you wanted me to do! What is going on?” Sometimes, God’s plan is different than what we were thinking.
Or maybe someone you love is fighting cancer. You were counting on God to come through for your family just like He always has. You were counting on a miracle!
But one morning, the doctor calls back with the test results that you don’t want to hear. Sometimes, God’s plan is different than what we were thinking.
The same thing is true of the Isreal in Jeremiah 29. The year is 586 BC. God is judging the nation of Judah because of their unfaithfulness. The Babylonians have attacked Jerusalem. They’ve taken 3000 prisoners back to Babylon. Including the king, the court officials, and the craftsmen. And the Jews are saying “This isn’t supposed to happen to us! We’re the chosen people! We’re the apple of God’s eye! What is going on?”
Today, we’re going to see that God is accomplishing plans in our lives even if those plans aren’t what we were expecting. And then we will see how we should respond to God’s plan for our lives.
The Jewish people have a beautiful history of God coming through for them in times of crisis. In Exodus chapter 3:7, the Lord told Moses that “I have seen the misery of my people. I am concerned about their suffering at the hands of the Egyptians. So I’m going to bring them out of the land of Egypt.”