Happy New Year! This particular time, with all the optimism, possibilities, and potential we are faced with at the start of another year, excites me every year. As we progress forward in the wonderful things God has called us to, I like to think of it as an opportunity to reset, shake off the old, and establish new goals for ourselves. Each year will undoubtedly bring new problems and tribulations, but I encourage you to approach each day with optimism and anticipation, and to commit to be a person of action rather than fear.
Now, because today is a vacation and many of you are likely to be doing something relaxing, such as watching sports or watching a movie, I’ll admit that I love playing video games. I find it thrilling to become a part of a story and to share in the fate of a character. In fact, I believe that video games will eventually replace movies among young people (but I digress). I’ve learned a few things about life through video games, and in the spirit of the day, I’ll share them with you briefly.
To begin with, leveling up in a video game requires XP. In layman’s terms, this means that your character must earn experience points in order to advance to the next stage of their journey. The same is true in life: you must do things in order to grow; the safer you are, the less you advance. Second, never give up; there is always a path forward. Every video game has a plot and requires perseverance. This is also true of our lives — life isn’t easy and it requires resilience. When you fail, you learn a valuable lesson and decide to keep going because you know there is always a path forward. Finally, I’ve learned through video games that adversity indicates that you’re on the correct track. You’re on the correct track when you come across a monster or an impediment. It’s the same way in life: when you meet something large, frightening, or monstrous, you’re on the correct track; it’s there to help you grow.
Friend, life is a gift, not a game. I encourage you to press into your full potential this year because God has endowed you with everything you need for abundant life and Godliness in Jesus.