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New Year, New You

Thursday, January 11th
New Year, New You
By: Chrissy Cooney

It’s all over social media as we begin 2024, “New Year, New You.” I’ve seen it touted with ads for eating better, exercising more, dry January, and all kinds of New Year's resolutions involving self-care and making yourself a better, stronger, healthier YOU.   

As 2024 began and I was praying and preparing to head into a new year of work, ministry, and family life, I found myself asking Jesus to make me more like HIM.  Less focused on me, less concerned with how I look to others, how I am performing, or where I am lacking, and more concerned with finding my identity in Christ.  “Show me what I need to do to look more like you?” I cried out to the Lord.  I asked Him for a passage from His Word that would guide me.  

This is the scripture that immediately came to my mind, “but the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law” (Galatians 5:22-23). If you have attended church for any period of time you are likely to be familiar with this passage about the fruits of the Spirit.  My prayer for you today is that Holy Spirit would speak in a fresh way to you, like He did to me, about this path to holiness.

God is Holy. He is Other, Set-Apart, Not Like Us. For the world to see Him when they look at us, we must be transformed from the inside out, from our roots to our fruit, if you will. To look like Him is not just to wait patiently for something, but to love God, our neighbor, and ourselves enough to be patient, to experience joy even when life is hard, to walk surrounded by peace in the middle of a storm, to be faithful even when we have every right to quit. I can’t do these things in my own strength, and neither can you, but if we reach out to Him with every situation, He will give us the tools that we need.  If our root system is drawing living water from the Well that never runs dry, then the fruit we are producing will look different; we will look like Him.

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