There seems to be something almost magical about the end of one year and the beginning of a new year. It is so magical that many folks often make “New Year’s Resolutions”—this is going to be the time that I start something new, or this is going to be the time that I stop that particular habit. And so, we wait. Something that we ought to be doing “today” is put off until that future day when the year changes. Or, with a year like this one, we put our hopes in the major difference that leaving one year and entering another year will supposedly bring.
But, what is the big deal about the first day of January? Why is that “the day” that seems to be the difference-maker? If there is something that is worth doing and will make a significant difference in our lives, why wait for another day beyond TODAY? Or, if there is something that is detrimental to my life and needs to be discontinued to get on a better path, why wait for another day beyond TODAY?
Aren’t you glad that God doesn’t wait for New Year’s Day? In the Old Testament, the Jews celebrated the Day of Atonement once every year. On that one day every year, the high priest would enter into the Most Holy Place with the blood of a bull and then he would lay his hands on the scapegoat, and the sins of the people would be remembered and then sent away into the wilderness on that day every year (Heb. 10:3; 9:7; Lev. 16:1 -34). Not so today! An alien sinner’s sins are removed at the point of baptism (Acts 2:38; 22:16), never to be remembered again (Heb. 8:12). A child of God’s sins are removed continually during his faithful walk and confession of sins (1 John 1:7, 9), never to be remembered again (Heb. 10:17). God doesn’t wait until a “move convenient season” to forgive! He forgives immediately! “The Lord is not slack” (2 Pet. 3:9)! If God doesn’t wait, why do you?
So, if there is something that you need to change in your life, in order to be right with God, don’t wait until New Year’s Day. Don’t wait until you “get everything worked out.” Don’t wait until a more convenient season (Acts 24:25). Don’t wait!
God told Ananias to say to Saul, “Why are you waiting?” (Acts 22:16). God told Paul to say to the Corinthians, “Behold, now is the accepted time” (2 Cor. 6:2). God told the Hebrew writer to quote from Psalm 95:7 three times, emphasizing the word “Today” five times (Heb. 3:7, 13, 15; 4:7). If something is the “right” thing to do, then it is right to do it “right now”! With God, every day is a “new day” (cf. Lam. 3:23). Make TODAY (not some day in the future) THE DAY that you take the necessary steps to get right with God!
-From David Sproule