New Year. I’m not a big fan.
It’s usually a time when I reflect on the travesty that was the year gone by.
All the ridiculous mistakes I made.
That time I decided to cut in a fringe and it ruined my life.
That money I wasted on that dress I never wore.
Relationships that didn’t work out.
Last years resolutions which were promptly destroyed by January blues.
That ministry I dreamed of starting but never found the time.
The unfinished bathroom project which is still dripping water through into the kitchen.
I’m not so much looking forward to 2019 but rubbernecking at the horrific scenes of 2018, holding up the traffic behind me to obsess over every grizzly detail.
And the more New Years you go through, the more cynical you can become. I’m not sure I even make New Year resolutions anymore as I’ve found out the hard way that habit change only comes through hard work and self control (none of which I happen to possess in January!)
But in my prayer and times of worship lately Psalm 8 just keeps creeping in. Just take a sec and read this will you –
'Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory
in the heavens.
2 Through the praise of children and infants
you have established a stronghold against your enemies,
to silence the foe and the avenger.
3 When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
4 what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?[c]
5 You have made them[d] a little lower than the angels[e]
and crowned them[f] with glory and honor.
6 You made them rulers over the works of your hands;
you put everything under their[g] feet:
7 all flocks and herds,
and the animals of the wild,
8 the birds in the sky,
and the fish in the sea,
all that swim the paths of the seas.
9 Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!'
There’s something unfathomable about that love which takes us, knowing that we are flawed and going to mess up again and again, crowns us with glory and honour and gives us a world of possibility to rule over.
I believe ‘rule over’ here means stewarding with care and creativity: taking what God has given us, and using it to bless others, to see Heaven come on earth, to help save the world.
What an exciting opportunity for 2019.
We are all creative, whether we believe it or not, because we are made in the image of a creative God.
And we are constantly creating new things – be it a spreadsheet, a relationship, a home, a piece of art, a family, an atmosphere in the workplace, a new worship song, a lasagna, a birthday cake, the list could go on and on.
When I look back to starting Honoured a few years ago, it was just the seed of an idea. I wasn’t sure what would happen or how it would work out. I’m sure it was a God inspired idea and God blessed it over and over again. But we created it from nothing. It was just an idea. And now it’s grown to be a ministry that blesses people all over the UK.
If we’re going to take God’s grace seriously we need to stop raking over the past and know for sure that the future holds hope and joy, and possibility.
Although it might not feel like it sometimes, there is a universe of possibility out there.
Sometimes we can get obsessed over the things that we haven’t got and forget to get excited about the things we do have – freedom, grace, creativity, compassion and a God who let’s us dream the impossible.
So, whatever happened to the dreams of 2018 – let’s dream big for 2019!