I’m sure you don’t need much convincing to let go of 2020. Here are three things to keep in mind as you kick 2020 to the curb, because how you move on is important. Take stock before you take off. Grab your phone, pull up Google Maps and type in Pikes Peak, CO. You’ll see a satellite view of the 14,115 ft summit. If you’re adventurous, you can drive to the top, and trust me, both the view and the drive are breathtaking. But it doesn’t matter how many times you enter a destination in your GPS, if you never select “your location,” you won’t know how to get where you want to go. Before you can reach your destination, you have to know your current location. Don’t rush into 2021; take stock of 2020 first, as dreadful as that may sound.
Mine for meaning. The reason we take stock of the past year before we look to the next is simple: everything has value, you just have to look to find it. You’re actually risking a lot if you simply disregard 2020 as a worthless waste of 366 days. A Pennsylvania man recently bought a “dismal painting” for $4 because he liked the frame. He later discovered a first print of the Declaration of Independence valued at roughly $1 million hidden behind that dismal painting. Things that look worthless can have a lot of value if we look hard enough.
Trust through the transition. As important as reflection is, we aren’t designed to stay in the past. Dwelling on difficulties can lead to discouragement, depression, or despair. Time never stops because we need forward movement, and a new year is the perfect time to transition our focus. Paul writes, “One thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straightforward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” Phil 3:13-14. We put our trust in God because He is faithful. He is the God of redemption and salvation. He is the God of new beginnings.
While 2020 may not have turned out how you planned, God is good and He is faithful. Seek His kingdom and His righteousness, and your 2021 will be filled with His presence. ■