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Thursday, December 30, 2021


"Whosoever will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me."
Mark 8:34


Indeed, 2021 has been another challenging and painful year for many of us. It has been a season of sorrows, tears, and burdens.   So many are hurting because of their losses!  I’m praying for them. However, we have learned many helpful lessons along the way. Despite the pain and challenges we have had to endure, there are many reasons for which we must still be thankful to God. We must be mindful of His many blessings toward us, even when life seems difficult and we struggle.  

Even amid our troubling and dark times, God shows His goodness and kindness toward us.   As the New Year 2022 quickly approaches, I am sure we are ready to bid farewell to 2021. I hope that as 2022 arrives, it will bring hope for a better year and a clean slate to write a new chapter in our lives. Every year at this time, we wonder what the Lord will have in store for us in the coming year. Despite the circumstances, we are pleased with what our God has accomplished through us in 2021We are grateful to God for the glories He has shown us despite our trials and sufferings! Isn't it exciting and wonderful to imagine that God has no limits to what He might do in our lives?! Our hope for our brethren and friends this coming year is that you have a year full of wonder and Grace. 

Every new year we have new hope and a second chance. No matter how badly we failed this year, we still have a second chance to do things better in the new year. When our Lord pardons our faults, He gives us the hope that tomorrow will be better and more fruitful. As we come to the end of this year and the beginning of a new one, let us examine ourselves and reflect on how we have used the past year, choosing to do better and make better and wiser use of the time the Lord has granted us. The beginning of a new year is the perfect time to make changes that can make a huge eternal difference in our lives. There is no greater need in one’s life than maintaining a good relationship with our Creator! We must make a change to improve our relationship with God. 

My focus for the New Year shall be "None of Self and All of Thee."


As the new year approaches, let us refocus on those things most essential and recommit ourselves completely to God. Let me suggest a few:

  • Let us have less of self and more of Him.  
  • Let us put the will of our Lord Jesus Christ first in our lives.  
  • Let us redeem the time and not allow anything or anyone to distract us from serving our Lord and His kingdom of righteousness.  
  • Let us put ourselves to death. When we crucify ourselves with Christ, we no longer live, but Christ lives in us (Gal. 2:20). Let us strive to live for Christ and not ourselves! 
  • Let us deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Christ (Mk. 8:34).
  • Let us strive to know God better and walk in a manner worthy of His calling.
  • Let us bear abundant fruit to God’s glory. 
  • Let us examine our hearts, look back at our lives, and devote ourselves entirely to God (1 Pet. 4:1-2).  
  • Let us aim to become poorer in spirit (Matt. 5:3).
  • Let us bolster our faith! 
  • Let us grow in Grace and strengthen our faith (Mk. 4:26-28). As our faith grows and develops, we start having none of self and all of God. We begin to fathom the width, length, height, and depth of Christ’s love (Eph. 3:18-19). Christ can only conquer our hearts when we give up ourselves and surrender to Him completely (Rom. 5:5).  
  • Let us serve God better and more faithfully. Let us use the gifts the Lord has given us to serve Him abundantly.  
  • Let us be more active in evangelism and start saving souls, for they are precious to God, our Creator.  
  • Let us be more zealous for the Lord and not be afraid and lukewarm.  
  • Let us have more love and kindness.  
  • Let us be more disciplined and have self-control.  
  • Let us not be ashamed of Jesus and the Gospel, pull back, and neglect our gifts to further God’s kingdom.  
  • Let us not be ashamed or afraid to talk to people who do not know the remedy for sin. Do not be ashamed of Him who has saved us, even though the outcome of our faith may cause hardship and troubles! Should we be ashamed of Jesus, or should He be ashamed of us?! (Hebrews 2:11; Mark 8:38Should we be ashamed of our Rescuer?! Should we be ashamed of our hope?! Should we be ashamed of the life that Jesus has brought to us?! Let us not have a silent faith!  
  • Let us fight for our faith and hope like good soldiers of Christ! A brave and good soldier is not distracted on the battlefield. He is not entangled with other things. He is focused on doing what his Commander says to do. A good soldier acknowledges that distractions will keep him from serving and pleasing the one who enlisted him. He is single-minded, focused, and not distracted by daily affairs (everyday life, our country, sports, entertainment, social media, cultural problems, politics, jobs, hobbies, and devices). Remember, a good soldier pleases the Lord and is not distracted, for he is focused on God’s kingdom of righteousness! Let us be good soldiers of Christ!  
  • Finally, let us be good athletes who compete by the rules to win. Which rules? Those sufferings that require us to take up our cross to follow our Lord (2 Tim. 1:8; 2:3). The rule for the athlete is not to avoid difficulties but to be willing to take up his cross, follow Jesus and suffer for Him (Matthew 16:24). The good athlete competes by the rules. He is willing to suffer shame, pain, rejection, and death. His reward is the crown of life forever! God will exalt him to His right hand! The rules of this race require us to die to ourselves, not save our lives at any cost.


Let us purpose in our hearts this year and for the rest of our lives not to fear and be ashamed of our Lord and His kingdom of righteousness. Let us proclaim Him and His Message to the world of darkness! Let us be faithful and endure that we might reign with Him.  But to accomplish that, we must not be ashamed and give up! We must be willing to suffer, lose our lives, be faithful, and stand up for Him! Moreover, let us be strengthened by the Grace in Christ to be more merciful, compassionate, loving, and forgiving. Remember Jesus and the Grace found in Him!  

The truth is that this might be the last year for many of us! Will we be one of those who will stand before God this coming year, or will we live to see many more years? Only God knows!  

Thus, let us choose to serve our God better. While we still have the breath to live, let us be grateful to our Creator and bear much fruit to His glory. Let us show our gratefulness by our devotion and service to Him as good soldiers who endure until the end and are approved of God, receiving their great reward (2 Tim. 2:14-26). Let us be instruments for honorable use (2 Tim. 2:20-21). To be honorable instruments to God, we must cleanse ourselves from the things of this world, dishonorable things, and start purifying our lives from the filth that stains us. To be an instrument for honorable use to our God, we must run from the passions and lusts of the flesh and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace from a pure heart. There is no other way to be useful to our Master and be ready for every good work!  

Let us make an inventory within our hearts to get out of the mud and be clean! Let the world watch in awe as they see our sincere faith and devotion to our Lord!  

May we further our service in God’s kingdom this year and each day of our walk with Him.  May we evaluate our strengths and weaknesses to fulfill God’s purpose. 

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” (Col. 3:23)

I want to encourage each of us with the song, “None of Self And All of Thee,” to put the will of Christ first in our lives, giving ourselves up and thus committing ourselves completely to Him.  

O, the bitter pain and sorrow That at time could ever be,
When I proudly said to Jesus, ‘All of self, and none of Thee.’

Yet He found me; I beheld Him Bleeding on th’accursed tree,
And my wistful heart said faintly, ‘Some of self, and some of Thee.’

Day by day His tender mercy, Healing, helping, full and free,
Brought me lower while I whispered, ‘Less of self, and more of Thee.’

Higher than the highest heavens, Deeper than the deepest sea,
Lord, Thy love at last has conquered: ‘None of self, and all of Thee.’


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