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New year: Given up?

By Naomi Allen

So it’s the start of the year and you’re thinking about resolutions. You want 2022 to be a year where you move forward and grow… so what’s going to help you do that? Here’s a different idea – this year what about giving up? Giving up your plans and dreams to God.

So this year why don’t you start by just giving up.

Often we can be so focused on doing “good” things, that we can miss what God is really saying. You know what I’m saying – going to church every week, serving in some way… but doing it because it’s what you always do, not because you are seeing what God is doing in you or through you.

So this year why don’t you start by just giving up. Giving up and letting God have control of your life. It sounds simple, but giving God control means surrendering your time, your money, your friendships, your plans, your relationships, your hobbies. Giving all of these to the God of the universe who has created you to become someone full of purpose and life.

You see, the persecuted church teach us that in giving up, in losing out, we can find a deeper faith in the One who never gives up or loses hope in us. Whether it be home, security, family or freedom, many Christians choose to give up those things to keep a relationship with Jesus. So, this year, be inspired by them – by Christians like Poh whose family discovered his Christian faith and kicked him out. Could you be inspired by him, and give up your plans and dreams to God and see where He will take you?

Here is a prayer you could pray:

Father God, here I am, you know me better than anyone else. You know what I’ve been created for. So today I give you all that I am. All my hopes and fears, all that I spend my time doing, all that I am would you take me and use me to live for you. Open my eyes to how you want to use me this year and help me to respond to your voice when I hear it. Thank you that you are a God that I can trust, who has the best for my life. Thank you that you are with me every step of the way. Amen.

Choose to Lose in 2022

All this talk about giving up fits nicely with our simple fundraiser, Choose to Lose. Could you get sponsored to give up something you love to raise money and prayer for persecuted Christians who have given up much because of their faith in Jesus?

The Author
Naomi Allen leads the Youth Team at Open Doors UK & Ireland. She's been working with young people for over a decade and loves seeing young people grow in faith and confidence in becoming who God’s calling them to be. When not at a youth festival or event you can find her in IKEA drinking the free coffee.

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imprisoned, falsely accused, and hated simply for following Jesus.