by Pastor Suzanne
1 Peter 4:8-11
8Above all, maintain constant love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins. 9Be hospitable to one another without complaining. 10Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God, serve one another with whatever gift each of you has received. 11Whoever speaks must do so as one speaking the very words of God; whoever serves must do so with the strength that God supplies, so that God may be glorified in all things through Jesus Christ. To him belong the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen.
Happy New Year and welcome to 2021. Feels a bit funny to write and say 2021 but I guess we will get used to it quickly as we do every new year. As I have shared many times, I do not do new year’s resolutions. I never seem to keep them and so it seems pointless to spend the time trying to determine what I need to change or add or do to be better in the new year. For 2021 I am just going to try to accept who I am and be the best I can be.
Some might say that is a resolution and maybe it is, but I think of it more as a lifestyle and not something I want to focus on for a specific period of time. I want to embrace and accept who I am. Hopefully, as I learn to embrace myself, good and not so good, I will be more accepting of others. We are all human and as such we all have wonderful attributes, things we wish we could change, and perhaps even things we are not proud of in our pasts. Someone once told me that you do not get to be, pick any age over 20, without having some things you would rather forget. We are all a conglomeration of all that we have been and done throughout our lives.
I was once much thinner than I am now. I have done diets and been successful only to put the weight back on and then add some more. I want to appreciate my body and what it allows me to do. I am active and able to golf and walk and do other forms of exercise. I want to accept my body as it is and focus on being healthy. Getting rest, getting regular exercise, and eating nutrients that my body needs. I am not going to stress over what our culture says about weight. I invite you to do the same.
I am blessed to have many different relationships. I am close to my family, I have a boyfriend, I have lots of friends, and I have a relationship with God. I count all of you as brothers and sisters and treasure our relationships. Some I have known for several years and some I am just getting to know. While it is hard to physically be together during the pandemic, I am hopeful that at some point in 2021 we will once again be able to gather and be together. I want to spend time listening, I want to learn your stories and share mine. I want to celebrate our similarities and embrace our differences. I want to recognize every person I meet is a child of God. I invite you to do the same.
I know that I am a beloved child of God and so are you. Spending time to converse with God, study scriptures, and learn more about my faith is important to me. I want to grow and develop into the Christian that God is calling me to be. I know that first I need to listen to what God is saying. We also need each other to find our strengths and develop our skills for ministry in the world. I want to be the best Christian I can be. I invite you to do the same.
These are not things to be done in 2021 and then checked off the list. We may not always feel it or realize it, we are blessed beyond measure. I want to praise God for all God’s blessings. And make this a way of life centered on God and living the life God has given me to the fullest. I invite you to do the same.