Whether your 2022 was one packed with excitement and joy or a year of struggles and sorrow, entering a new year brings with it hope for the future. It doesn’t matter what’s going on in your life right now – as you step into a new year, you can hold onto Emmanuel, our “God with us.” The year may be changing, it may seem like the world Is shifting, but God doesn’t change.
Of course, as we move into 2023, it offers a fresh start for us. While many people make resolutions for their new year – and there’s nothing wrong with that – statistics show that most resolutions get abandoned after just a few weeks.
They don’t last, but whether you decide to come up with resolutions or goals for yourself in the coming year, the most important thing is to determine to move into a new year closer to God and with renewed purpose.
Although the Bible doesn’t specifically say much about celebrating a new year, there’s plenty of wisdom we can draw from its pages as we leave 2022 in the past and move forward into 2023.
Whether you’re spending some time looking back on the past year, worrying about the future, or trying to let go of what’s behind you, we’ve put together some helpful verses that will guide you, encourage you, and help you step forward into the new year with faith.
Looking Back on God’s Grace in 2022
Whether you’ve had good times. trials and tribulations, or a sprinkling of both in 2022, God is faithful. And if you spend some time looking back on the past year of your life. you’ll see that He’s been there with you; He’s been working in your life, even when you didn’t realize it. While it’s never a good idea to get lost in our past, as you move ahead into 2023, it’s a good idea to look back on God’s incredible grace, and here are a few verses that remind us of this: 1 Chr. 16:8; Deut. 23:5: Lam. 3: 22: James 1:7.
After you read through these verses, take a moment to think about the marvelous works God has already done for you in the past. Consider how He has turned curses into blesses. Meditate on His faithfulness to you in the past year. Give thanks for what God has already done for you, so you move into 2023 with thanksgiving and a heart of praise for what’s already been done in your life. He’s been faithful!
Leaving the Past in the Past and Focusing on God’s Future Plans
Reflecting on the past is good. It gives us time to think about what God has worked in our lives. But there are always things that we would rather leave in the past – things we should leave in the past in order to move forward. The Scriptures remind us in several places that it’s important to leave the past behind, stop holding into our future. And the following Bible verses can help us focus our minds on leaving the past and the past, moving forward, and focusing on God’s future plans for our lives: Gal.2:20: Ps. 43:18-19: 2Cor. 5:17; Pro.16:9; Phil. 3:13-14.
Several of these verses talk about old things being passed away and forgetting the things behind us. We don’t have to live in the past. If it’s been a difficult year, we can acknowledge that, praise God for how He’s helped us through, and then let go and move on. Holding on leads to bitterness. It can lead us to live in the past instead of moving into the good things God has for us. And then, as we let go, we can focus on God’s plan for us in the coming year. He promises to bless us, make a way in the wilderness, direct our steps, and that we shall find Him when we seek with all our hearts.
Don’t Worry About 2023 – You Have Nothing to Fear
Although we don’t know what 2023 will bring, we’re reminded repeatedly in the Bible that we don’t need to worry about anything when we keep our focus on Jesus. God will be with us in the new year. He’ll be our strength. He’ll guide us. And when we stay close to Him and hold His hand, we have nothing to fear. If you’re feeling apprehensive about a new chapter or you’re worried about what might be in store
for the new year, here are a few verses to reflect on that will give you peace: Phil. 4: 6- 7: Heb. 13: 5-6; Matt. 6: 33-34: Pro. 3:5-6;15.41:10-17.
God’s promises are comforting, and we know we can count on them. Don’t worry about the future. But instead, make your requests made known to Him, and He will give you His peace for the new year. He’s promised never to leave us. We’re reminded to take no thought for tomorrow. He’ll direct our paths. He’ll strengthen us and help us.
Why? Because He cares for us so greatly. You can stop worrying – God’s got it under control. He’s not going to let you down in 2023 – He has a plan for you! Rest in that.
Planning is Important but Don’t Forget to Let God Guide You
It is important to plan ahead, and the Bible talks about that in several places. But even if you’re making plans for the coming year, don’t forget to let God guide you. Remember, God sees the big picture – He sees his overall plan. So, plan ahead. Seek God about your future. And then, remember to submit to the plans He has for your life as He guides you: Pro. 27:23-24, Pro. 13:16: Luke 14: 28-30; Jer.29:11; Pro. 3:5
Yes, it’s important to think, plan, and avoid being foolish about our future. But don’t get so wrapped up in your own plans that you forget about God’s plans for you. Remember. He says He knows the plans that He has for you – and they are good plans to give you a future and hope! Don’t just lean on your own understanding but seek His will and His paths. That’s the key to 2023 that is filled with God’s blessings.
*You’ll Only Find Contentment in God in 2023*
As you let go of 2022 and begin a new year, it’s so essential to remember that you’ll only find contentment in God this year. Many times, we set goals or come up with resolutions based upon things we think will make us happy. But the truth-only God can make us happy. We’ll only find the joy we want when we focus on Him, give Him thanks, and work to draw closer to Him.
Peace for this new year will come from God. Happiness will come from coming to God with praise. As you read the following verses, let your heart overflow with gratefulness for what God has already done for you. Open your heart to Him and let Him give you His peace and contentment as you walk into the new year. Meditate on these verses: 2 Cor. 12: 9-10: Phil. 4: 11-13; 1 Cor. 15: 57-58: Ps. 96: 1-3: Ps.100:1-5
Personally, going into the new year is a quiet time for me. One of reflection. While much of the world parties and drinks in another year, I prefer to pray it in. The promise of a new beginning is wonderful, and As we are on a verge of a new year take a little quiet time with God. Reflect on what He’s done for you in the past year. Get ready to leave the past in the past and move forward without worry…because God is already in the future. Make plans, but let God direct your paths. And remember. God is the key to contentment in the coming year. If there was one passage of scripture I would leave with you to meditate on as you begin 2023, it is this:
Put on therefore, as the elect of God holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering: Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you also do ye. And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body, and be ye thankful. Let the word Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.”Col. 3:12-17