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Some years ago, I read a small verse that has come to mean much to me. It simply reads: “No man can go back in time and start his life over again, but every man can start today and give his life a brand-new end.”                     

When we were kids playing a game with our friends, and we didn’t like the outcome, we would shout “Do over!” Adults are often no different. Have you ever wished that you could go back in time and start life over? Surely there are certain things you would do differently. Some of the less-than-desirable choices you may have made would be considered more carefully. But we all know that we can’t start life over. The best we can do is to start at this point-in-time and ensure that our life will be lived and end differently.

We are now in the first week of the New Year, 2019. The reason we call it New Year is not just because the calendar has concluded the year before, but because it is as though we are starting a new chapter in life; wiping the slate clean, so to speak. So, what kind of things might be life-changing for us?

Perhaps our life will change for the better by making astute financial decisions. We will all face retirement (if you have not already), and good financial decisions could make the difference between sitting in a rocker on the front porch or taking a cruise around the world. Perhaps certain changes in our lifestyle will determine whether we live for five more years – or twenty-five. After all, “All men want to go to heaven, but no one wants to die.” We all would like to live longer, and lifestyle changes can often make it happen.

Some would argue: “You only live once!” Another line from an old television commercial states: “Grab all the gusto you can get!” Everyone should desire to live life to the fullest, but certainly not to the detriment of our physical, financial, emotional or spiritual health.

I believe the apostle Paul said it well in his letter to the Corinthians. He wrote: “All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any.” (1 Corinthians 6:12) It is true that we can choose how we will live; what things we will do. But, for our live to be lived with meaning and purpose, as well as beneficially, we must know that the decisions we make today will make for a better tomorrow.

May the year 2019 be your best year ever because you have determined to make all the necessary changes in your life that will ensure a great outcome.

- Pastor Jerry L. Dunn, Oak Street Baptist Church    

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