2021 is coming – make this your best year ever!

A boy told his father, “Dad, if three frogs were sitting on a limb that hung over a pool, and one frog decided to jump off into the pool, how many frogs would be left on the limb?” The dad replied, “Two.” “No,” the son replied. “There are three frogs and one decides to jump, how many are left?” The dad said, “Oh, I get it, if one decides to jump, the others would too. So there are none left.” The boy said, “No dad, the answer is three. The frog only DECIDED to jump.” Does that sound like parts of your life? 

Great inspiration and great thoughts, but often times we only decide, and months later we are still on the same limb of do-nothing.

I want us to look at a scripture you may have not really looked at before

For everything there is a season,
a time for every activity under heaven.
2 A time to be born and a time to die.
A time to plant and a time to harvest.
3 A time to kill and a time to heal.
A time to tear down and a time to build up.
4 A time to cry and a time to laugh.
A time to grieve and a time to dance.
5 A time to scatter stones and a time to gather stones.
A time to embrace and a time to turn away.
6 A time to search and a time to quit searching.
A time to keep and a time to throw away.
7 A time to tear and a time to mend.
A time to be quiet and a time to speak.
8 A time to love and a time to hate.
A time for war and a time for peace.
9 What do people really get for all their hard work? 10 I have seen the burden God has placed on us all. 11 Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end. 12 So I concluded there is nothing better than to be happy and enjoy ourselves as long as we can. 13 And people should eat and drink and enjoy the fruits of their labor, for these are gifts from God.

After the year we have just had I thought this might be a true encouragement for us all that 2021 might be a year of joy and to rejoice in all God has blessed us with there is to come.

Solomon tells us everything has a season a time, when have gone through a difficult time and I am believing we are coming into a better time. Everything we see in these verses tells us God has a plan and we have to believe it, that it is good and we must discover our part, our purpose!

1)    In order to make this our best year ever we must reestablish our true purpose!

What is your purpose in this world? This is the core question of our lives. If you have not thought seriously about this, you have not taken life seriously. Many of the problems in people’s lives would be settled if they understood their purpose in life and lived it out. Many have gone into careers, jobs, schooling, ministry and so many other avenues without really discovering their purpose.

Mine is simple, to enable people to become all God has called them to be.

Let me give you a very basic understanding of your purpose and it should only grow from there…

The Bible says in Romans 14:8…

If we live, it’s to honor the Lord. And if we die, it’s to honor the Lord. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

We have wasted so much time, so have wasted years but ladies and gentlemen I want us to start 2021 out right so that we can fulfill our purpose, have the joy, love, peace and success we so desire without wasting another moment in frustration

If it is true that we belong to the Lord, then we have the obligation to live for the Lord. 

As the Word says…1 Corinthians 6: 19-20 

Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, 20 for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.

Our lives are not our own. They do not belong to us. We belong to God.

The Bible says…Philippians 2:12,13

Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. 13 For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.  

Your purpose is to live out and fulfill the purpose of God for your life. He is working to unfold that plan in your life, and your responsibility is to cooperate with his work in you…here is part of the kicker there is also a way in which we are to fulfill our purpose, going on to verse 14 and 15

14 Do everything without complaining and arguing, 15 so that no one can criticize you

Youch……The grand purpose of your life is to know God and have an ongoing relationship with him that brings him glory in the way you live your life the basics don’t stop there..

Ephesians 2:10

For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

What is your purpose? It is to know God through his Son Jesus Christ and live for him. Your purpose is to do as much good as you can do for him and others. You are not here to serve and please yourself; you have a higher calling. 

If you don’t understand your purpose, then your life is built on the wrong foundation. And if your life is built on the wrong foundation, it does not matter how magnificent the structure is, it will crumble and fall.

Your primary purpose here is not to be successful or have a wonderful career. Your purpose is not to be happy in your earthly accomplishments or earn a lot of money. Your purpose is not even to find love and have a family. 

The Bible says…Matthew 6:33

“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.”

It is not that these other things are bad, they are not, it is just that they cannot come before the main purpose for which you were created — to know God and glorify him with your life. When you get that straight, then the rest will all fall into place.

2)    The second thing to make this your best year ever is establish right priorities!

You may understand….

–       your life belongs to God
–       you are to live for him rather than yourself. 

But now you need to understand God’s specific plan for you. Begin by asking yourself…
–       “What are my gifts? 
–       What are the specific talents and interests that God has put into my life? 
–       How can I use these to fulfill his purpose for me in this world?” 

The reason that these questions are important is that you may be doing many good things, but you may not be doing the things that God has in mind for you. Your area of interest may be the gift God has given you to promote growth and influence for His kingdom.

Setting priorities is not about choosing between what is good and what is bad. That has been settled when you decide to live out your God-given purpose in life. 

Priorities have to be set when the choice is between what is good and what is best — between what will be beneficial and what is actually God’s will for you.

He has made you with particular interests, skills and gifts. Go in the direction of your interests and gifts, because this is how and why God has created you. It is about getting the most from your life. 

Setting priorities helps you to trim down your involvement to a reasonable level.

3)    The third thing you need to do to make this the best year ever is make a plan

You can understand your purpose and set your priorities, but if you have no plan on how to make it happen, it will never happen. 

Nothing is going to happen until you make it happen. 

–       It is too easy to let life sweep you along and your agenda be filled with the urgent little things of the day. 
–       If you are not deliberate in planning out your life, your life will drift, and life will “just happen.” 
–       You want your life to happen on purpose. If you can’t get everything done, it is because you are trying to do more than God wants you to do. 
–       You have just enough time to do what God wants you to do.

Here is what Paul has written to us Ephesians 5:15-20

So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. 16 Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. 17 Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do. 18 Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit, 19 singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. 20 And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

It is important to take the time to sit down and write out your life purpose. 

–       Put your priorities down on paper. 
–       Make a plan to fulfill those priorities and make them happen. 
–       Begin to say no to some things and cut out other things. 
–       Make sure there is enough time for the important things. 
–       Pencil in time for God and for ministry to other people. Your ministry may be encouraging someone over the phone, baking a pie, singing a song, teaching a class, witnessing to your neighbor, writing a story, leading a group, going with the coffee shop ministry team, working with children, youth or the elderly. 

Your ministry will be unique to your personal gifts and calling, and you will have time for God to use you because you have made a plan.

I ask you to consider if the New Year could actually speak to you and this is what it said;
“Here I am, the New Year. I am an unspoiled page in your book of time. I am your next chance at the art of living. I am your opportunity to practice what you have learned about life during the last twelve months. All that you sought and didn’t find is hidden in me, waiting for you to search it but with more determination. All the good that you tried for and didn’t achieve is mine to grant when you have fewer conflicting desires. All that you dreamed but didn’t dare to do, all that you hoped but did not will, all the faith that you claimed but did not have — these slumber lightly, waiting to be awakened by the touch of a strong purpose. I am your opportunity to renew you allegiance to Him who said, “Behold, I make all things new.”
Happy New Year!!!!!!