2021 or 2020-won?

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January 11, 2021

Growing through adversity.

Let’s be honest; we are all grateful that 2020 is over! The events of the past year were enough to overwhelm and stress out even the most peaceful soul. If the loss of your serenity caused you to feel stagnant, disoriented, or even demotivated, you are not alone. The last 12 months have felt like a mulligan. But the good news is that 2021 presents us with the opportunity for a much-needed do-over.

Few of us were at our best in 2020. As you enter a new year and reflect on the setbacks, adversity, and loss of last year, it is tempting to think that 2020-won. After all, how can you feel victorious when tears roll down like a river, and a heavy heart is your constant companion? As tempting as it may be to place the year that was into the “L” column of life, consider for a moment what scripture tells us about how God uses our seasons of trials to cause us to triumph in Christ!

Photo by Japheth Mast on Unsplash

The Bible says Christ himself was “a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief…” (Isaiah 53:3). But those realities did not prevent Jesus from accomplishing the Father’s will.

Later in Isaiah 53:10, the prophet refers to the Messiah by declaring that, “the will of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.” Christ triumphed by remaining faithful to God’s will in the face of His trials. Because of His victory over the things that bring grief, namely the death of sin, we too can be victorious.

Scripture teaches us that the basis of victory is not on dates and times; rather, upon trust and obedience to God’s word

A change in the calendar from one year to the next feels tremendously exciting. 2021 holds extraordinary promise. We all want to believe that we are leaving our pain in the past, and nothing but joy lies ahead. However, the sobering truth is that our difficulties and disappointments do not simply disappear because we have welcomed in a new year. Scripture teaches us that the basis of victory is not on dates and times; rather, upon trust and obedience to God’s word.

1 John 5:4–5 boldly states,

“For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world — our faith.”

The good news is that Christ has overcome the world, and since we are in Him, we too are victorious. We realize our victory when we place our faith in the unchanging promises of God despite the trials that come our way.

May your faith in the goodness of God cause you to be an overcomer in 2021!