|Looking far below from Eagle's Nest near Munich, Germany.|
God can give us this perspective in the new year if we seek to stir up our gifts.
In his letter to Timothy, the young pastor whom Paul ordained (I Timothy 4:14) along with other elders, he encourages Timothy to stir up the gift which God had given to him: "For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self control" (2 Timothy 1:6-7). Several commentaries indicate that this verse speaks about kindling the flame of faith or adding fuel to the fire in Timothy's life as it relates to using his gift. It also pertains to us. According to the Bible, each of us has received gifts from God when we became a believer. The Lord has not only given us the Holy Spirit as a seal of our faith, but He has also equipped us for service. We must add fuel to the fire in order to serve God with excellence in this new year.
According to "Barnes' Notes on the Bible", the author says: "However rich the gifts which God has bestowed upon us, they do not grow of their own accord, but need to be cultivated by our own personal care" (http://bible.cc/2_timothy/1-6.htm). We must feed our faith on a daily basis in order to fan the flame which God has ignited in our soul. Bible study, prayer and regular fellowship with other believers in corporate worship help us to do this, but we must also exercise the gift or gifts which God has given to us.
|My husband saying, "Which way do we go?" in the Swiss|
Mountains near Zurich. This is a good question for us as well.
This past year with its ups and downs has been packed away like my Christmas decorations, but the new year is in front of us and we should welcome the opportunities it presents. As Paul admonished Timothy, we are to remember that "God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and love and self control." Therefore, we need to stir up our gifts and use them to His glory not looking back on the old year past, but seizing upon the adventures in faith that lie ahead for each of us. Then, when Christmas time rolls around again, we will have many more wonderful memories to hang upon the tree of our life as we live to serve Christ our Lord. May you and your family be blessed in this new year as you use your gifts for His great glory! Selah!
I welcome your thoughts and insights here. Please leave them as encouragement for others to read and be blessed.