We’ve been through various collective, societal experiences this year, including the continued effects of a pandemic, global supply chain issues and what they’re calling the ‘Great Resignation.’
Cultural reality is constantly shifting. To accommodate, we must leave behind mindsets and habits that hinder us from moving forward and revise long-standing routines or risk becoming burnt out.
Three Things Left Behind
As we enter into a new year, let’s be intentional about abandoning these three things:
Our Desire for ‘Normalcy’
I’ve heard friends and peers share their hope for a return to normalcy. Most wish to go back in time before COVID-19 transformed our realities. I understand this sentiment. Life had a certain cadence that has since been taken away.
With the new year just around the corner, I don’t want to fall into the trap of spending energy waiting and wishing for life to be exactly as it used to be. I have found freedom in embracing the new abnormal.
In several ways, the past season sharpened OneHope, and me personally, for the better. New restrictions fueled my team to create innovative practices, especially in the digital arena. On a personal level, I learned the importance of reaching out to those I love even when they’re far away, a practice I will continue strengthening.
Though this year has been challenging, I encourage you to take a moment to recognize the ways in which you grew stronger through obstacles.
In 2020, I had to restructure my daily routine during the months spent at home. With my travel schedule halted, I was blessed with more time to spend with the Lord during times of quarantine. I enjoyed being in His presence for prolonged periods of time without distractions. Even though the season of quarantine has passed, I’ve become more intentional about ﬁnding additional moments to spend with the Lord.
Time in God’s Word can easily be forgotten, and if you ﬁnd that happening in your own life, I invite you to ﬁnd a devotional routine that better ﬁts you. For those who are visual, watching a video devotional might be more engaging than reading. Maybe taking a walk in nature while listening to the Word allows you to more easily dwell in God’s presence.
Whatever your preference is, I encourage you to deﬁne your priorities and decide what your devotional time will look like in the new year. For more ideas on how to improve your devotional time, check out this blog post my friend Joel Stockstill wrote!
Take a moment to reﬂect on these questions: are there any routines in your life that are no longer serving you well? If so, how can you refresh them?
A Spirit of Incivility
This has been a difﬁcult season for many, fueled by division, dissent and polarization during a time we all would’ve beneﬁted from unity. There seemed to be a complete departure from empathy and understanding. Oftentimes, it felt like voicing any personal opinion would be met with angry opposition.
In order for there to be any change in the world, one must start within. I want to be intentional about living with a humble and loving spirit toward anyone I encounter, especially in situations where disagreements may arise. As believers, we should strive to leave space for understanding and peaceful conversation. Let’s live in a way that honors God by following the teachings of Colossians 3:12, clothing ourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.
As I reﬂect on 2021, these verses come to mind: “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing!” (Isaiah 43:18-19). I invite you to join me in keeping an open heart and mind to all the new things God is doing in our lives.
As you prepare for 2022, take some time to reﬂect: What do you feel called to leave behind in 2021?
Rob Hoskins is the President of OneHope. Since taking leadership of OneHope in 2004 he has continued to advance the vision of God’s Word. Every Child. by partnering with local churches to help reach more than 1.7 BILLION children and youth worldwide with a contextualized presentation of God’s Word. Read more by Rob Hoskins at goodnewsfl.org/author/rob-hoskins/