by Chris Heinz
Editor’s Note: At the advent of a new year we are pleased to republish a slightly spruced-up version of last year’s popular post by published Christian author Chris Heinz. May God bless you and equip you for all his good plans in the weeks and months to come.
New Year’s Day is almost upon us, which means lots of people are making New Year’s resolutions. According to the Statistic Brain Research Institute, 45% of Americans usually make New Year’s resolutions. The three most popular resolutions of 2015 were to lose weight, get more organized, and spend less/save more money. Unfortunately, less than half of us are successful in achieving our New Year’s resolutions, and the percentage drops significantly with age.
While making New Year’s resolutions is a fine idea, I’d like to again suggest something more productive at the start of 2017—praying a New Year’s Christ Awakening Prayer. If you can, pray this prayer at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve or as a first act on New Year’s Day. If you’d like, you can also pray it throughout the year. I know I will.
Here’s the prayer, also available as a download to print and post. May this be your most Christ-filled year yet!
There is no one like you and there is no one above you. You are Everlasting God, Alpha and Omega, Beginning and End. No one can fathom your wisdom or exhaust your love or match your power. Your Word says you give and take away, and you plan our places and seasons. Thank you for giving me the start of another year.
As I look forward to this new year, four things I ask:
First, reveal Christ to me.
In all I will do this year, show me Christ. When I sit and when I rise, when I work and when I play, when I read your Word and when I walk in your creation, when I fellowship with others and when I am still, show me Christ. Your Word says Jesus is the image of the invisible God, so when I see him, I will see you.
Second, let me experience you.
I want a close relationship with you—Father to child. I want to know beyond my current knowing what you are like. I want to feel your touch, to hear your laugh, to feel your gaze upon me. I want to cradle in your arms as you hold me through eternity. Align my spirit, soul, and body in holy affection. Your Word says that in Christ I am a child and heir of God forever.
Third, form Christ in me.
Use your Word and your Spirit and your church and your disciplines, and whatever else you choose, to build up Jesus in me. I want to decrease and Jesus to increase so that Christ is easily and abundantly seen through my life. Perfect me in Christ so I realize I lack nothing, even through suffering and triumph, grief and joy, fellowship and loneliness, action and rest. Your Word says that to live is Christ and to die is gain.
And fourth, get glory through me.
If there’s a way for my life to bring honor to you, and give you great joy and reveal your inexhaustible goodness, then may my life speak of your majesty. I want to turn my glories over to you, not reveling in the admiration of man, but instead serving the purposes of God—not from labored obligation, but from wholehearted joy. As you get glory through me, you will turn that glory over to your Son, who is now and forevermore reigning at your right hand. Your Word says that in all things Christ will have the supremacy.
Heavenly Father, I dedicate this year to you. Do with it as you will; do in me what you may; do through me what you want. For your glory and the glory of your supreme Son, I pray in Jesus’ matchless name. Amen!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Chris Heinz is the Vice President of Human Resources for EnergyCAP, Inc. As a Gallup-certified Strengths Coach, he helps leaders to maximize their effectiveness by aligning their strengths with their desired outcomes. His book, Made To Pray, helps readers find their best prayer types. You can follow Chris at his blog, Twitter or LinkedIn.