Today’s article is written by Misha, the Admin. Assistant at Crossroads. I hope you enjoy it. – Pastor David
Guess what? After receiving numerous complaints and hearing many people agree that this year has started off so poorly, we have been given a reset button for 2020. That’s right: at just the click of a button, you can say bye-bye to all the things you didn’t like about the past few months and try again from the start of the year!
Simply click this button to reset 2020:
Think of all the things you can now do differently with hindsight of how things played out: who would you spend more time with in-person? When would you take your holidays, and where would you go? What plans would you make and precautions would you take going into the year? You now have the chance to do it all again, so enjoy your new 2020!
…Sorry, what? The button didn’t work? Nothing happened when you clicked it? Did you try re-opening the e-mail or restarting your device?
Oh wait, I know what’s wrong…this button can’t reset 2020. “April fools!”
It’s a silly antic, but I hope it also made you wonder: what can we do if 2020 hasn’t gone the way we hoped?
On the one hand, we have to acknowledge that we can’t go back and change what has already happened. If you’ve experienced pain, regret and loss in the events of 2020, I want to encourage you to take the time to write those things down and bring them before God in prayer. Know that it’s OK to express your sorrow, fear and anger to God, and it’s OK to take the time to mourn (John 11:32-35). This is an important step in moving forward and recognising that we can’t change the past.
But how can we move forward with the rest of 2020 when we’re disappointed by what we’ve been through so far? I came across this interesting article by Josh Bersin, who talks about us being in the midst of “The Big Reset” and how this impacts what we do in business and leadership. The current situation has shown us (among many other things) that even in crisis, we can do life differently if the situation requires it: we can make better use of working remotely, we can simplify processes, and we can take the time to build empathy and trust.
I was intrigued by this idea of simplifying what we do and using this time to build character for the benefit of others, so I wondered: what does God say about change and what can we do right now? Here are a few of my thoughts from what I’ve read in Scripture:
- In a manner of speaking, God has already pressed a “reset button” for us in how He has brought salvation to us (2 Corinthians 5:17). By reconciling us to Him through Jesus, our sins are no longer counted against us, and now that we do not live as we formerly did, we can have a relationship with Him and share in His glory (John 17:20-23). Remembering what God has already made new within us and made possible for us will help us have a better perspective on what we’re experiencing.
- When the world bombards us with so many opinions, it can be hard to know what to think and how to feel. We should remember what Paul instructed the Roman church: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2) The Psalmist added: “Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” (Psalm 139:23-24) Ask God to help you renew your mind and search your heart so He can guide you to make the changes you need for the rest of 2020.
- The struggle is real: seeing the world in its sinful, fallen state brings us much grief, and it’s hard to come to terms with how fragile our lives are. Suffering is a part of our lives no matter how hard we try to avoid it. However, “we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:16-18).
You may be wishing you could have done things differently in the past few months, but why not start today with what God has given you the ability to change? We don’t have to press a “reset button” because of what God has already done for us. Let’s give Him thanks that we don’t have to change the past in order to see meaningful change in our lives. “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1)