Dear Elmwood Family and Friends,
Happy New Year!
In Revelation 21:5 our Lord Jesus declares, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Amazingly, this magnificent transformation process began when the Father sent His only begotten Son to be born as a baby in Bethlehem over 2000 years ago. The completion occurred when Jesus cried out from the cross, “It is finished!” The full payment for our sin had been made. Operation Human Rescue was completed! The grace has been provided in the innocent death and glorious resurrection of Christ for each and every one of us to be made new. Being “made new” truly is a process.
Yes, the payment was made at Calvary, but only when we personally receive the free gift do we begin to live the new life. Then the adventure begins as the Holy Spirit fine tunes us through the long process of sanctification, making us more and more into the very likeness of Christ.
So as we enter the year 2016 we find ourselves facing another year. Is a new year something to fear or dread, or do we see it as a fresh opportunity for becoming more like our dear Lord and Savior? Have you ever driven down a country road and not known where it will lead you, excited about what might lie ahead? Have you ever hiked a trail wondering what spectacular vista will appear around the next bend? Because of the incredible gift we have been given, we do not travel alone nor do we need to be afraid. Our Master has promised to always be with us and to never forsake us. This does not mean that there will be no bumps in the road, detours, or tragedy in the days ahead. Not only does the Apostle Paul state in 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.” He also tells us in the same letter, chapter 4, verses 7 -11 that “we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves…and that we are afflicted…perplexed…persecuted…struck down… always carrying about in the body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our body.” Finally verses 16 & 17 tell us, “Therefore we do not lose heart …for momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison.”
More and more and more the glory of the Lord is being produced in us. Is it all worth it? Absolutely! He who began this good work in you will complete it. 2016 is going to be glorious - maybe tough on these earthen vessels - but oh so glorious. So buckle up! Here we go on the further adventures of the Holy Spirit and us.
All for His glory,
Pastor's Corner >