McDowell Technical Community College

Morganton Seventh-Day Adventist Church

Look to Jesus in the New Year!

By Rick and Cindy Mercer

Burke County


One time I read a story about a mother who had lost two young sons, a 3- year old boy and a 16-month old baby boy.  Both had drowned in a backyard swimming pool. And after a difficult period of grief she managed to refocus her vision.  She began looking at Jesus intently.

She realized her life was worth living if God could use her in some way.  She surrendered her life into His hands, placing her complete trust in Him.  She began to experience an intense desire to get closer to God, to walk with Him each day.  She found that this even made her feel closer to her two lost sons.

She once said, “Now I hunger and thirst after God because of my love for Him.  I know what it means to depend on Him fully, to seek Him with my whole heart, to love Him from my innermost being.  I know how it feels…when God touches your soul and comforts you.  I know how it feels to rest my head on His bosom.”

This woman looked intently at Jesus in her darkest hour.

How can we look to Jesus in 2018 amidst our finances, wayward children, depression, relationship struggles and the other multiple challenges that we encounter in this journey called life?  When we see Jesus in Scripture it brings spiritual vitality to our whole being.  In the Gospels Jesus heals the sick, multiplies the bread, raises the dead, forgives sin, delivers demoniacs, and calms storms.  He brings healing, happiness, and hope.  He overcomes disaster, demons and death.  He defeats sorrow, suffering and sickness.  He triumphs over sin and Satan.  His miracles reveal His power.  His parables reveal the teaching of His kingdom.  His sermons reveal His eternal principles.

His life reveals God’s love for the spiritually bankrupt.  It shows the redeeming quality of His grace.  He seeks.  He saves.  He forgives.  He transforms.  He makes hearts new.  How wonderful is that?!

  As we look unto Jesus, God will fulfill His marvelous promise in 2 Corinthians 3:18: “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.”  True, lasting character change comes as the Spirit of God impresses upon our minds the life changing principles we are studying in Scripture.  In the book Patriarchs and Prophets we are told that “It is a law of the mind that it gradually adapts itself to the subjects upon which it is trained to dwell.”  As the old hymn states: “Look upon Jesus, sinless is He; Father, impute His life unto me.  My life of scarlet, my sin and woe, cover with His life, whiter than snow.”  Looking unto Jesus, we are changed.  Let us look daily to Him in 2018, becoming more and more like the lovely Jesus we admire so much.

As we look unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God (Heb.12:2) then we can be assured that he will fulfill the desires of our heart.

We pray that God will surprise you with His bountiful love this upcoming year!  Look to Jesus…it is our only hope.