I want a new you in 2018.
I want a new me, too.
Specifically . . .
I want to see us turn from sin (especially sins that have wreaked havoc in our lives for a long time) and sprint like Olympic athletes toward the grace of God.
I want us to reject the lies the enemy whispers in our ears and hold a megaphone up to God's truth.
I want us to adopt a zero tolerance policy toward bitterness. It has worked like a cancer in our hearts for far too long already.
I want us to be salty—a gritty force for good in our homes, in our schools, in our workplaces, and in our communities. May we stop seeking to blend in and know we were meant to stand out.
I want us to be light in a world that is oppressively dark. May we stop worrying that the world will spontaneously combust soon. Instead, I want us to boldly declare that Jesus is the "Light of the World" (John 8:12). In Him, there is no darkness at all (1 John 1:5).
I want us to stop being boy-crazy and become unbelievably God-crazy. May 2018 be the year that we finally entrust our love lives to Jesus because we know, deep down in our guts, that we are already treasured, adored, and loved.
I want us to stop comparing and start championing. Every girl we see bears the image of God. She matters enough to Jesus for Him to go to the cross. May she matter enough to us to give compliments, not criticisms.
I want us to see our beauty for what it really is—just the icing on the cake. Beauty is nothing to hide, but it is also not the source of our value. May 2018 be the year we find ourselves looking in the mirror and proclaiming, "I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made" (Ps. 139:14).
I want us to stop justifying our secret sins, since they're not a secret anyway. God sees every nook and cranny of our hearts and actions. We cannot hide from Him. May the fear of the Lord give us the courage to drag our sins out of the dark shadows and into the light.
I want us to love the Word of God and the people of God more than we love Netflix. May we stop scrolling and clicking and invest in something that truly matters this year.
I want us to be obsessed with knowing our gifts and using them for God's glory. It is all hands on deck, Church. May none of us sit on the sidelines in the year ahead.
I want us to know that serving others is how we get ahead in the kingdom of God. May we stop clamoring for attention and awards and look for ways to give and serve and sacrifice.
It Won't Happen by Accident
2018 is not just a 365-day block on the calendar. It is a lap in our race of faith. It is a step, taking us closer to the day when we will see Jesus face to face. It is not a year given to us for our own glory, but for His.
I believe we can be transformed this year. I believe that when the ball drops for 2019, we can place a checkmark by every item on this list. But it will not happen by accident. There is one tool we need most as we ask the Lord to shape and chisel us more into His image.
It's not a mystery or a magic pill or a new workout routine. It is the Word of God.
I'm digging my fingernails into the promise found in 2 Peter 1:3–4 for us in 2018:
His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.
We have everything we need to live godly lives this year. How do we get it? We open God's Word today, the first day of a new year, and the day after that, and the day after that, and the day after that . . . x 365 days.
God's Word is the key that will unlock a new us this year. Working in tandem with the Holy Spirit, the Bible has everything we need to be transformed. We've dedicated every single blog post this month to the theme of getting you into the Word (and getting the Word into you). From practical tips on how to study to lists of our favorite studies to questions to ask of God's Word, every post has one goal—to get you to the deep well of God's Word for a long drink of truth.
Erin Davis is passionate about pointing young women toward God's Truth. She is the author of several books and a frequent speaker and blogger to women of all ages. Erin lives on a small farm in the midwest with her husband and kids. When she's not writing, you can find her herding goats, chickens, and children.