Today’s message summary of December 31, 2014 from Pastor Gus Brown:
We have bright hopes for tomorrow because of Jesus Christ.
There a many blessings that await you in the New Year. Tomorrow can be a very bright future for you. Even with this, we are to remember that God is the One who provides these blessings and a bright future.
Remember who the One is who redeems you–who purchased you with His precious blood:
Now this is what the Lord says–the One who created you, Jacob, and the One who formed you, Israel–“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are Mine.”
There is nothing to fear about the coming year. Wake up in the morning and say, “Thank you, Lord. Let’s do something special in 2015.”
I will be with you when you pass through the waters, and when you pass through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. You will not be scorched when you walk through the fire, and the flame will not burn you.
What God is saying to you here is that no matter what you’re going through, God will be right there with you in the New Year. It doesn’t matter how bad it may be. We are not always promised good days. There will be tough times; nevertheless, you have the presence of the living God with you–as long as you rely upon Him.
How confident are you about God’s presence? When you believe that God is with you, it gives you the ability to step into things that you normally would not do.
He is not just a Savior, but He is the Lord your God who is to be glorified. He wants you to live in such a way where you acknowledge His presence and reflect your life in Christ to others. You and other people will say, when they see the testimonies through your life, that only God can do these things!
“…everyone called by My name and created for My glory. I have formed him; indeed, I have made him.”
You will indeed glorify God when you live for Him. He created you for His glory and His purpose.
“You are My witnesses”–this is the Lord’s declaration–“and My servant whom I have chosen, so that you may know and believe Me and understand that I am He. No god was formed before Me, and there will be none after Me.
Make a commitment in 2015 to focus on being a better witness for Him. God knows all of your troubles and your concerns. He knows about everything taking place, but He says that you don’t need to worry about those things. He just wants you to be a witness for Him.
We should never lose the thought of who we are and what we can do. When we truly grasp this, we will never be ashamed to be a witness for Christ. Make a commitment to be strong in the Lord and in your faith in the New Year. Strive to be greater in proclaiming the gospel to others. Be proud to be chosen by God to be who you are. The Lord is the One who will make the way for you to be successful in the New Year (Isaiah 43:16-17).
“Do not remember the past events, pay no attention to things of old.”
Don’t get stuck in past events that will keep you from being a testimony for Jesus in the New Year. Get rid of all of the anger and strife that you’re holding onto. Get rid of the old baggage and throw it away. Look at 2015 as God doing a new thing for you in your life.
“Look, I am about to do something new; even now it is coming. Do you not see it? Indeed, I will make a way in the wilderness, rivers in the desert.”
Something new is happening every day and God is accompanying you. Just open your eyes and see what He is doing for you. (If you don’t look for it, you won’t recognize His presence and see the blessings.) Seek Him in all things. There is so much for each of us to do and to grow and learn as we are doing it.
Not that I have already reached the goal or am already fully mature, but I make every effort to take hold of it because I also have been taken hold of by Christ Jesus. Brothers, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, I pursue as my goal the prize promised by God’s heavenly call in Christ Jesus. Therefore, all who are mature should think this way.
We can’t remain focused on Jesus Christ and move forward if we are always looking behind us (the past). You can’t do anything about it now. Forgiveness helps us to move forward. Forget what is behind you. Tomorrow is a new day–a New Year. Press on and focus with all of your effort on serving Jesus Christ in the New Year.