It’s New Year’s Day. A new reading plan. A new writing day for me. And readings from scripture about beginnings.
A reading about creation.
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:27 (NIV)
A reading about the first return of the exiles from Babylonian captivity.
“In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the Lord spoken by Jeremiah, the Lord moved the heart of Cyrus king of Persia to make a proclamation throughout his realm and to put it in writing…” Ezra 1:1 (NIV)
A reading about Jesus’s birth.
“But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, ‘Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.’” Matthew 1:20-21 (NIV)
A reading about Jesus’s ascension to heaven.
“After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.” Acts 1:9 (NIV)
This is the time of year “resolutions.” But truly I haven’t put much thought this year into my “resolutions” because every year they seem to be the same: show more kindness, be more organized, exercise more regularly. Then I realized I hadn’t yet asked God. Does he want me to begin something new?
What I think God wants is this: my willing heart. God changes hearts to accomplish his purposes. God moved the heart of Cyrus king of Persia. God moved the heart of Joseph to take Mary home as his wife.
As for my next year, I offer it to God. It may include a beginning of some sort … or it may bring slow plodding on a continued journey.
Dear God, You are the creator of beginnings. You are the one who changes hearts. I offer my heart to you, Lord, to change as you will. Amen