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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

4 January 2013: John Studd, Life Church Petersfield

New Year Resolutions

It seems to me that the practice of making New Year’s Resolutions at the beginning of the year has gone into decline in the past few years.  I seem to remember that, years ago, in the first week of a New Year people would ask each other what their New Year’s Resolutions were.  Perhaps people realised that they rarely kept their Resolutions for more than a few weeks and, rather than fail, stopped trying.

Christians hold that new beginnings with God can be made at any time and that these new beginnings will carry on beyond this year – and on to eternity.

In Luke chapter 19 we read about Zacchaeus the tax collector who, being short, climbed a sycamore tree in order to see Jesus.  When he walked past, Jesus looked up and called Zacchaeus to come down immediately so that he, Jesus, could stay as his house.

Zacchaeus, like many tax collectors collecting tax on behalf of the Roman, had taken some of the money for himself. His reaction, upon meeting with Jesus, was to make a new start – to give half of his possessions to the poor and to repay those he had cheated with four times the amount he had stolen.

Jesus said that salvation had come to Zacchaeus’ house.  Jesus came to seek and save the lost and is still seeking – and offers a new beginning, at any time of year!

This article was submitted for publication in the Petersfield Herald on 4 January; it is possible that it was published earlier or may be published later.

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