January 1, 2017

Maximizing the Gift of a New Year

Pastor: Jeff Bedwell Topic: New Year Scripture: Ephesians 5:5–7

New Year’s Day 2017
Maximizing The Gift Of A New Year
Ephesians 5:15-17

One of our greatest dangers is in letting the urgent things crowd out the important things in our lives!

How to Make the Most of My New Year

Assume Responsibility For My Life

“For each will have to bear his own load.” (Galatians 6:5)

Three Kinds of People in Life:

  • Accusers
  • Excusers
  • Choosers

My choices determine more than my Circumstances

Believe I Can Change

“I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)

“I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)

As a follower of Christ a major focus of my life is to stay vitally Connected to Christ!

Clarify What I Really Want

“Let us choose what is right; let us know among ourselves what is good.” (Job 34:4)

“Everything is permissible”—but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible”—but not everything is constructive.” (1 Corinthians 10:23, NIV84)

Three Important Questions:

  • What do I Value?
  • What do I want to Change?
  • What is going to Last?

What am I going to do with my one and only life that is going to last for eternity?

Don’t Wait To Begin

Three powerful words: Do It Now

“He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap.” (Ecclesiastes 11:4)

“If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done.” Ecclesiastes 11:4 (Living Bible Paraphrase)

Life must be enjoyed under imperfect circumstances!

Perfectionism produces Paralysis

Enlist The Help Of Others

“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9–12)

“Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” (Ephesians 4:15–16)

To be truly biblical and truly effective, the growth process must include the Body of Christ

Where Do I Begin?

“And Jesus increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man.” (Luke 2:52)

  • Intellectual: What do I want to learn?
  • Physical: What will improve my health?
  • Spiritual: What will deepen my relationship with God?
  • Social: Who will I connect with in a more meaningful way? What will my ministry to others be?
  • Eternal: How will I impact my world with the Gospel
    of Jesus Christ?

“For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” (Luke 19:10)

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might.” (Ephesians 6:10)

Making It Personal

With God’s help in 2017 I will…

  • Grow and learn in the following ways:
  • Gratefully take care of my physical health by:
  • Deepen my relationship with God by:
  • Connect with others in a more meaningful way by:
  • Minister to others by:
  • Impact my world with the Gospel of Jesus Christ by: