By Scott Franks
The first day of a brand-new year. That sounds so promising, doesn’t it? A clean slate, a fresh start, a whole calendar of pristine potential. The idea of newness is so compelling that many people decide New Year’s Day is the morning they will wake and be better, do more, finally begin to be someone new—thinner, fitter, more adventurous, better organized, or more creative. There’s nothing wrong with those desires or making resolutions to achieve them.
But Christians have a wonderful secret: We already are new, and we can enjoy powerful transformation every day. We have undergone the most radical transformation possible—we have died and are living a new life! Scripture says we are new creatures, new creations!
Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life (Romans 6:3-4).
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come (2 Corinthians 5:17, English Standard Version).
Every time we take Communion, we are celebrating how, because of the sacrifice and love of Christ, we are truly new in the most important ways—no longer slaves to sin, now children of God and co-heirs with Christ, with the incredible power of the Holy Spirit abiding in us and transforming us. Even as our physical bodies age and disappoint us, even when we grow weary of this broken world that disappoints us, hope and strength are poured into us each day:
“So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day” (2 Corinthians 4:16, ESV).
Every day, we stand in a river of fresh grace flowing from the cross. The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning (Lamentations 3:22-24).
As disciples of Christ, every day is something like New Year’s Day. Every day has that hope, potential, and promise. Thanks be to God, we have been changed, and we can change, and our best days are ahead, and our best days will never end.
Scott Franks preaches for the Edgemere Church of Christ (Edgemere.org) in Wichita Falls, Texas. He also contributes weekly devotionals to the 728B site on Facebook.