This is a brief year-end message that Pastor Kerry Shook, from Woodlands Church in Texas, delivered recently. We hope you are blessed by his thoughts.

When did you first learn about Christ?  Was it from a friend?  At church?  At home?  When did God become more than just a word to you?  When did faith become a personal relationship, and not just a religion, for you?  It’s good to take a look back and remember.

Remember the passion you felt for God – the feeling of relief from the burden of sin, guilt, and shame, the unspeakable joy, the peace and confidence of knowing that you were forgiven and accepted by God!  Temptation seemed to have lost its grip and you felt free!  Nothing else mattered as Jesus took first place in your life. It was euphoric; for some perhaps, even sensational! For others, the feelings may not have been as ecstatic, but the reality was the same.  God did a work of grace, and His grace was not without effect.  You were changed, born again!  Old things passed away, and all things became new!  You had a new outlook on life.  Hope replaced despair!

Just looking back for a moment causes gratitude to rise.  He chose me!  He chose you!  Before you set your gaze on the year ahead, glance back. Consider what God has done and give Him thanks.  How did He work in your life in 2018?  What prayers did He answer?  In what ways have you grown spiritually?

Happy New Year and may God bless you and your ministry in 2019!