"It is you who blesses the righteous man, O Lord; You surround him with favor as with shield."
2015 just went out and 2016 is comfortably in. How is your mindset today? What type of year have you reflected upon these last 12 months? Has it been one of delightful highlights? Or one full of unexpected circumstances? This new game play is the ground work that is framing your mindset for the year to come.
Be in comfort that there are quite a few people out there looking at the dreaded finances today that stalked them all year. Or, possibly the fact they have not met their soulmate and experience bouts of loneliness these previous months. It could also be that they are in one of those dead-end jobs that suck the life right out of you. Or, maybe, they surround themselves with people that drag them down.
Anyway you look at it, we all make mistakes that cause these predicaments. King David was a tremendous leader but committed adultery with another man's wife. Furthermore he sent her husband away in battle to be killed so that he can be with her. Throughout his terrible choices, God found favor on him and forgave. The Bible says, "He was a man after God's own heart." (Samuel 13:14)
Most importantly, David didn't focus on his faults. When he chose incorrectly, he felt remorse and turned towards the correct direction. He believed God would bless him again. He expected it. "Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life." (Psalm 23:6)
Yet it is human nature to mull over the year's past and find fault in our undertakings. We painstakingly look at all our incorrect choices to find out where we went wrong. Nothing is wrong if we take the year in review and make ourselves accountable. But, when we allow these feelings to plague us for days - weeks, we are setting up a pattern that will continue the new year.
Instead of expecting more of the same result, why not expect God's blessing to take root? Instead of expecting to get by, start expecting God to play more of a role in your day to day choices. This mindset will change your entire philosophy for 2016. More importantly, it will keep you from making stupid human mistakes.
And should you find yourself in a whirlwind of turmoil, after all, none of us are exempt. Consider Ruth. She was a widow living in a foreign country when the land endured a severe famine. Ruth and her mother-in-law, Naomi, where actually starving to death. So Ruth prayed and was prompted to go out into the fields each day to pick up whatever leftover grain the reapers had missed. Boaz, the owner of the field, found favor in Ruth. He told his men to leave handfuls of grain on purpose. Despite Ruth's crises, that she was unable to change, God provided. God will always provide our basic needs.
This year keep these thoughts in your heart. Allow God into your life more to ensure you don't make rash choices. And should there be a situation that is out of your control, take heart, and realize God will provide. Know that we find favor in him always amidst any crises. He has our hearts and our backs. Happy New Year!