Seven days into the New Year and I’ve already messed up on my well intentioned goals. I’m doing just fine with one of my resolutions as I’m still enjoying daily reading and listening to the bible. Another 355 days or so and I will have conquered reading the entire bible this year. But it’s the other goals of healthy eating and daily exercise that I’ve been scuppered on. Cycling to the train station on my first day back at work felt great, even when I realised I had forgotten my wallet to pay for the fare. The day afterwards my legs felt all jelly-like and I hobbled around the house as if miming walking with an invisible zimmer. Apparently I looked so pitiful that my wife had mercy on me and gave me a lift to the station for my next day’s work meetings. I must admit I was grateful even though my ‘bike to the station resolution’ lasted 24 hours. I’m determined to cycle again, this time taking my wallet and all.
My resolute no biscuit eating diet fell apart when a neighbour called in for a cuppa and a chat. I justified serving up a plate of Jaffa cakes with the brew as they are quite clearly not labelled as biscuits, and are really mainly fruit – of the orange kind. After munching on one of the zesty forbidden cakes I had a mini-conversation in my head as I tried to pay attention to my neighbour as he spoke about his Christmas family woes. ‘You’ve blown your New Year’s resolution Chris… What are you going to do now hey? You might as well as have another one, or three!’
How are you getting on with your hopes for this year? One goal that I won’t be tempted to break like my ‘biscuit free year’ one is a vision that has excited me for 2013. Whilst I have heard some people describe this year as unlucky for some, I am expectant as to what God wants to do through us as a Baptist family.
I believe that our God longs that we see more of the kingdom of heaven here on earth. Let me reassure you, my optimism isn’t a case of burying my head in the evangelly-cheerful sand while painful job cuts and financial uncertainty plague us. I am certain that the best is yet to come and have faith that our time as a Baptist family to shine even greater in a world that lacks hope, has come.
One goal I hope to see kick started in 2013 is for many more Baptist evangelists and pioneers to be called and trained to reach out to others who haven’t got a clue what it means to be a Christian, let alone a Baptist! I’m not just talking about seeing more accredited evangelists like me, but rather a small army of pioneers who would have the confidence to do new things beyond the fringe of church life and reach out to the 96% of people in the UK who have yet to get to grips with the good news of Jesus.
Imagine if together we could celebrate the last 400 years of Baptist life in the UK by raising up 400 pioneers in the years to come who would creatively reach the lost, last and least. What do you long to see happen this year to change this world for Jesus? I would love to hear your hopes and dreams for 2013. May we expect great things from God and attempt great things for him.
This article first appeared at http://www.baptist.org.uk/blogs/big-hearted.html