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We stand at the advent of a new year. The year 2019 is gone forever.

For some, it may have been an emotional time filled with difficulties. Despite the setbacks, the grace of Jesus Christ was ever present with the the love of God and the presence of the Holy Spirit.

The tough times of the past year are not meant to remind us of how bad things were, but rather, to serve as reminders as how God created us strong enough not to surrender to the tragedies of life. At times, we might bow under the pressure of life but we did not break. Why? Because God designed us to stand not fall; to succeed not fail; to persevere not quit; to be an overcomer not just a winner. All of this is possible because God's grace was with us, and still is with us.

Be assured that God's grace is available to you in this coming year. There will be moments when you will feel overwhelmed by life, by people, by issues, by circumstances, by demands, by struggles and temptations. You may even reach the point when you cry out: "I just can't take anymore. Remove this pain Lord!" At such a moment, listen with your heart to God's answer to you: "My grace is sufficient for you... I know the plans I have for you, to bless you, not to destroy you!"

You are more than a mere chance recipient of God's grace. God has called you intentionally, loves you intentionally,listens to your prayers intentionally.

It is all because of the wonderful grace of God! May you be surrounded by the grace of Jesus Christ this New Year and may this be your best year ever!

•••

Editor's note: The Rev. Dr. Scott Stewart is the pastor of Pea Ridge United Methodist Church and Brightwater Methodist Church. The opinions expressed are those of the writer. He can be contacted at [email protected] or 479-659-9519.

Religion on 01/01/2020

Print Headline: May 2020 be your best ever

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