Carefully determine what pleases the Lord Ephesians 5:10 NLT
The New Year can often bring a mixed bag of emotions and memories for many of us. Some may have just experienced the best year ever and look forward to an even greater one looming ahead. Others may have just trudged through one deep struggle after another.
Whether you’ve just walked through the greatest year of your life, or are incredibly glad to see this one finally over, one truth still rings clear amidst it all. We are not alone. Not ever.
This New Year the Lord took me back to a previous picture I had received some years ago.
It was a blank canvas.
The Blank Canvas inspires one to explore the depths of call to the edges of their own personal journey
I sat staring at the white, untouched canvas. As the blank canvas awaited my first stroke, I had this thought: “Maybe I need to start with a blank canvas and give God ample space to plan out the rest of my life. Make myself completely available to Him.”
One of my life goals is to get to a blank canvas stage in my walk with God. Ultimately, I want to present God with a blank canvas, so He can plan my life. I realised that this step of faith is going to be a whole lot harder than I ever imagined or envisioned.
It left me with a very probing question for myself. Did I really even have a blank canvas to present to God? And, not in the literal sense. I’m sure I could find a blank canvas somewhere – even in such a digital age. But, in my heart. Had I really released my will to God’s plan for my life?
To do this I have to be honest with myself and the plans I have for my life. I certainly want to follow His lead, but I think many times my canvas is loaded with my own agenda. If I want my canvas to be completely blank, then I need to offer it back to God with nothing on the canvas.
It leads me to ask you the question: Have you given God a blank canvas to plan your life in 2018?
Be prepared when you do. God seems to love a challenge. He is great at taking nothing and making something when we let Him paint on the canvas of our life. But, I’m not sure as followers of Christ if we can fully realise our ultimate design until we let the Creator have His way.
Let me offer for your encouragement in 2018
‘Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.’ Isaiah 43:18-19
‘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
‘How lovely is your dwelling-place, Lord Almighty! My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the Lord;
My heart and my flesh cry out for the living God’ Psalm 84:1-2
‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.’ Proverbs 3:5-6
‘We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.’ Proverbs 16:9 NLT
‘The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.’ Lamentations 3:22-23 ESV
‘Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed’ Proverbs 16:3 NLT
‘You crown the year with your goodness, and your paths drip with abundance.’ Ps. 65:11
‘I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead.’ Philippians 3:13
‘There will be a highway there, called “The Road of Holiness.” No sinner will ever travel that road; no fools will mislead those who follow’ Isaiah 35:8 GNT
‘Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.’ Philippians 4:6-8
‘Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it’ Proverbs 4:23
May God richly bless you each as you start the New Year with a blank canvas.