Into the New Year, God Goes Before Us

Text: Exodus 23:20-33

“Behold, I send an angel before you to guard you on the way and to bring you to the place that I have prepared.” (Exodus 23:20 ESV)

The New Year is upon us and it’s a time of closing one chapter and opening another. Our family likes to spend some time during the New Year’s holiday reflecting on highlights from the previous year, maybe watch some home videos or browse through some photos to cherish the memories we made, and share a festive meal together. This year it’s homemade sushi—a Larche tribe favorite!

A new year is also an opportunity to take time for self-evaluation and introspection, to realign ourselves with the priorities we value most, and to saturate our hearts with the promises of God’s Word, afresh and anew. Here’s a great tool for that.

A particular promise I want to encourage you with today is found in Exodus 23:20. It was God’s promise to Israel as they were transitioning from a season of wandering into a season of stability. They were soon going into their Promised Land and God assured them that He would send His angel to go before them, into the place that He prepared for them. They were not to be afraid of anything because the angel would take care of everything—including their enemies. They only had to pay careful attention to the divine voice guiding them.

The same principle is true for followers of Jesus Christ today. Not only is it true that Jesus goes before us to prepare a place for us in heaven (John 14:2-3), but the place we walk in today was prepared by God, and where we will walk tomorrow is also prepared by Him. He always goes before us.

twitter-64You can face your future with great confidence because God is already there. Tweet this

How might that affect your life going in to this new year? Knowing that God has already gone before us to prepare a place of destiny should be comforting to our souls. It should also swell our faith that regardless of what troubles, trials, sicknesses, adversaries, financial obstacles, or hardships await us, God is already there preparing to sustain us, to strengthen us, and to increase our influence for His glory in the world (1 Peter 5:10).

God never sends you into a situation, or a season, alone. He always goes before you. He stands beside you. And He walks behind you, redeeming every past failure. You can face your future with great confidence because God is already there.

Think about that as you seek to abide in Him this week.

Heavenly Father, thank you for your promises. You have given us your Word that you will always go before us and prepare a place for us. Help us to be comforted by the fact that we will face nothing this coming year that you haven’t already confronted on our behalf. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

twitter-64You will face nothing in your future that God hasn’t already confronted on your behalf. Tweet this

Other resources to help you bring in the New Year with great resolve:

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20 Inspiring Bible Verses to Bring in the New Year

Bring in the New Year with God’s promises on your heart! Meditate on these encouraging Bible verses to cultivate a deeper intimacy with God and foster a rejuvenated faith this New Year.

I also recommend these related posts about preparing for the New Year:

 

Inspiring New Year’s Bible Verses

(Isaiah 40:30-31) Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

(2 Corinthians 5:17) Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!

(Psalm 98:1) Sing to the LORD a new song, for he has done marvelous things; his right hand and his holy arm have worked salvation for him.

(Romans 8:18) I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.

(Isaiah 43:19) See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

(Proverbs 16:9) In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.

(Ephesians 4:22-24) You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

(Deuteronomy 7:13) He will love you and bless you and increase your numbers. He will bless the fruit of your womb, the crops of your land—your grain, new wine and olive oil—the calves of your herds and the lambs of your flocks in the land he swore to your ancestors to give you.

(Jeremiah 29:11) For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

(Proverbs 23:18) There is surely a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off.

(Psalm 31:23-24) Love the LORD, all his faithful people! The LORD preserves those who are true to him, but the proud he pays back in full. Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the LORD.

(1 Peter 1:3) Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,

(Lamentations 3:22-24) The unfailing love of the LORD never ends! By his mercies we have been kept from complete destruction. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each day. I say to myself, “The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!”

(Romans 5:5) And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

(Ezekiel 11:19) I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh.

(Colossians 3:9-10) Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10 and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.

(Revelation 21:5) He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”

(Micah 7:7) But as for me, I watch in hope for the LORD, I wait for God my Savior; my God will hear me.

(Isaiah 54:1-5) “Sing, barren woman, you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy, you who were never in labor; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband,” says the LORD. “Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes. For you will spread out to the right and to the left; your descendants will dispossess nations and settle in their desolate cities. “Do not be afraid; you will not be put to shame. Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated. You will forget the shame of your youth and remember no more the reproach of your widowhood. For your Maker is your husband— the LORD Almighty is his name— the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth.

(Philippians 3:13-14) No, dear brothers and sisters, I am still not all I should be, but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven.