This is what the Lord says: “Don’t let the wise boast in their wisdom, or the powerful boast in their power, or the rich boast in their riches. But those who wish to boast should boast in this alone: that they truly know me and understand that I am the Lord who demonstrates unfailing love and who brings justice and righteousness to the earth, and that I delight in these things. I, the Lord, have spoken! Jer. 9:23-24 (NLT)

     Dear heavenly Father, on this New Year’s Day, thank you for the gift of a new year. But first of all, thank you for all the grace you lavished on us in the past year. You remained faithful even when we were faithless; you gave us daily mercies, and we needed your mercy on a daily basis; you delighted in us when we tried to find our delight in anything else but you. Your love is irrepressible, inexhaustible, and inexplicable, apart from hat Jesus has done for us.

     And now, in response to the words you spoke through Jeremiah, this is our prayer for the upcoming year. May it be a year filled with getting to know you better and better and better. To know you, and your Son, Jesus, is the essence of eternal life (John 17:3). By your grace, take us into deeper intimacy with the whole Trinity.

     With the Apostle Paul, we too declare our desire to know Christ—in fresh and new ways; and the power of his resurrection (God the Holy Spirit), and the fellowship born from suffering with Jesus in this world (Phil. 3:10). And we want to cry “Abba Father!”—more often, and with greater joy and confidence. Since it is to your glory that we boast in truly knowing you, grant us ample reasons to be bodacious in our boasting!

     We begin this year confident of your unfailing love, because your love is not based on anything in us, but everything in Jesus. In Christ, you cannot love us more and you will never love us less. May your love propel us into the stories of justice and righteousness you plan to write this year on earth, in our communities and cities. May we dance and suffer, work and pray, serve and love, all to your glory. So very Amen we pray, in Jesus’ merciful and mighty name.