The Lord would have you use this new calendar year as a marker point. Draw a line in the sand between the old and the new, between the ‘before’ and the ‘after’. The Spirit of the Lord declares over you that this is your ‘leap year’, a year for leaping forward many paces… and not going back. He warns you to close the door on what needs to be left behind – use it only as a springboard to push yourself forward into a transformed life, indeed a transfigured life, one where you look different and think differently each new day. And God says to you, ‘Make your determinations before me today and stay faithful to me and my ways throughout the days ahead and I will stay close to you. My Spirit will be your close companion and all that you have burnt up as a sacrifice to me, will be left behind as you travel on this renewing journey. When you look back to this marker point you will not recognise yourself and will marvel at my works in your life, because of the transforming power of my Spirit at work in you’.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.