The New Year is more than just a marking of time—or at least it can be. Many people see it as an opportunity to make a new start in some area of their lives.

Perhaps it’s our new calendars with their fresh images or our new diaries and weekly planners with their unspoiled pages. Perhaps it’s the knowledge that some of the people closest to us and millions of others around the world are making New Year’s resolutions and setting their sights higher. Call it what you will—a personal wake-up call, a jolt to our collective conscience, or peer pressure. It’s effective—at least for a few days. We all know how that goes.

This year can be different. This year, your New Year’s resolutions can be the start of wonderful lasting changes, especially if you include God in your plans and work with Him. If your motivation is to please Him most of all, then you can be sure that He will help you make any necessary changes 1. In the process, because He loves you and wants you to be happy, He will also bring other good things your way in answer to your prayers. He has promised, “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart” 2.

As you ponder your future, please consider that the decision to place your faith in God and accept Jesus as your Savior is the most important decision any of us will ever make, as our eternal destiny depends on it. The things of this world are temporal, our bodies will age, and we will all eventually die, but Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life… Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die” 3.

Jesus loves you. If you call on Him with even the simplest prayer, He will come to you. And in fact, He longs to live in your heart, if you’ll open your life to Him. You can pray a simple prayer, such as:

Dear Jesus, please forgive me for all my sins. I believe that You died for me. I invite You into my heart and life. Please fill me with Your love and Holy Spirit, help me get to know You, and guide me in the way of truth. Help me to love You and love others and live by the words in Your book, the Bible. Amen.

  1. 1 John 5:14–15
  2. Psalm 37:4
  3. John 14:6; John 11:25–26