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The first thing I did on the first day of the year was to list down who I think I am in Christ. As I made my list I was very thankful that God gave me dreams that are way bigger than my body. I listed that I am a Christian so I would do all things for God’s glory. I jotted down that I am a husband and that I would love my wife second only to God. I wrote that I am a father and that I would help my children fulfil God’s purpose in their lives; and how I should leave an inheritance to my kids. I listed down a lot of goals, from the simple to the impossible, and it made me look forward to doing things right for 2019. Before the day ended, I stayed up late to watch James Harden set NBA records for most consecutive 30 point games. I slept 30 minutes over the bedtime that I set. The next morning I didn’t hear my alarm, missed exercise and packed my breakfast so I could catch the train to work. I said to myself sarcastically, “Great start to 2019.” It was the 2nd day of 2019, and I was already feeling like a failure. I heard the Holy Spirit whisper, “I do not want you to feel guilt and condemnation regardless of what day it is.” Because of that I prayed, praised, and worshipped God for a few minutes. It reminded me of what Jesus did in Mark 14: 27 “You will all fall away,” Jesus told them, “for it is written: “‘I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.’ 28 But after I have risen, I will go ahead of you into Galilee.” 29 Peter declared, “Even if all fall away, I will not.” 30 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “today—yes, tonight—before the rooster crows twice you yourself will disown me three times.” 31 But Peter insisted emphatically, “Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you.” And all the others said the same. Jesus knew that his disciples would desert him, so He told them that everything would be okay and that He would meet them in Galilee after all the chaos. When I read how Jesus told his disciples about how He knew they were going to fail Him, I didn’t feel any hint of condemnation. I felt encouragement and inspiration instead. I could picture Him like a loving father, brother, or friend Who told His disciples that it was alright even if they let Him down. I imagined Jesus telling them, “You are not perfect, and it’s okay. I accept you and love you so much.” God does not condemn us, He encourages and empowers us. I may not have started my year right, but I’m not going to let my mistakes affect the outcome of my goals. Jesus is in my corner, and I will continue to be the best that I can be for His glory. 2019 will be a testimony of God’s goodness, faithfulness and love.

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