Turning The Page

2020 - 2021 Moving from one year to the next is so arbitrary in that the dates are man-made, but there is always a significance at this time of year as we look back on what has passed and look forward to what is coming.

We are Turning the Page   

As a child in primary school, I vividly remember looking forward with excitement to the day when my old writing book could be exchanged for a new one. The old one was tatty, dirty, scruffy, ink-splattered, with dog-eared pages covered with crossed out, illegible scrawlings, scribblings and doodlings, complete with bright red corrections from my teacher. What anticipation ~awaiting the reception of a brand new, clean, unspoiled, unsullied, virginal book

After writing my name on the front cover, I remember, waiting with bated breath, my pen hovering over the spotless white first page. With great determination and deliberation, I commenced writing, certain that this book would be different, with perfect writing, faultless spelling, clean pages with no messy mistakes or need for the teacher’s corrective red pen. Maybe your experience was similar … and what followed?

Unfortunately, I was not able to continue in the way in which I started, with such promise of goodness and perfection. Soon the new book resembled the old, exhibiting all the familiar traits of failure, and once more I was in the position of eagerly awaiting its replacement.

Does this not reflect life? We try so hard to ‘Turn the Page’, to put the old behind us, to start afresh … and that is how millions of people approach every New Year. But after a while, it appears that all the old habits, failures and faults have re-appeared. There are many people who do not like themselves, who feel guilty about who they are or of what they have done, and are forever trying to ‘Turn the Page’ or ‘Turn over a New Leaf’. Over and over they try to start afresh, but they are mostly unsuccessful in the long term however determined they are to change. They make every effort to reform their lives but are not able to shake off the old life, to cut themselves off from crippling habits and get themselves cleaned up and free.

The wonderful good news of the Christian gospel is this: there is a way for us to start afresh with a new clean life, but there is only one wayJesus said, “I am the Way and the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father (can be set free from their old way of life) except through Me”

The Sovereign Lord speaks to us through His disciples in His Word, the Bible:

“Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord”

“The Lord says, ‘No matter how deep the stain of your sins, I can remove it. I can make you as clean as freshly fallen snow. Even if you are stained as red as crimson, I can make you white as wool. If you will only obey Me and let Me help you’”

The Lord Jesus died, taking the penalty for our sin, so we might be forgiven

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and

purify us from all unrighteousness”

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ (has come to the Father, repented of their sin and received Jesus as their Lord and Saviour), he is a new creation (a new person altogether);

the old has gone, the new has come

As we turn to the Lord and humbly ask for His help, we can know His forgiveness and freedom from our past, from our sin and rebellion, disappointments and discouragements, damaging hurts and regrets.

What will your life look like as you turn the page into the New Year?

A new start … a clean page … is possible, through our Lord Jesus Christ

 

Ron Brickman