It's the end of another difficult year brought about by the COVID pandemic, unstable religious and political situations, natural disasters, and many more. As challenging as it has been, it's good to reflect on ways we can face this new year with confidence.

On January 3, 1900, Ellen White wrote a letter to Brother and Sister Sisley in Australia: ‌‌"I greet you this morning with a 'Happy New Year.' Another year, with its burden of record, has passed into eternity. We know not what that record is, and cannot know till the judgement. But a new year has commenced, and I feel like dedicating myself anew to God—soul, body, heart, and strength. A new page is turned. What shall be the record of this new year? What shall be its revelations in the history of the world? What shall be its revelation in our individual history?‌‌" (Lt2, 1900)

While we can't predict what will happen this coming year, we can control our individual history.

One way is by dedicating ourselves ‌‌"anew to God—soul, body, heart, and strength.‌‌" By doing so, we choose to follow the biblical commandment to love God ‌‌"with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength‌‌," as recorded in Deuteronomy 6:4-5 and Mark 12:30. Verse 31 continues, ‌‌"This is the first commandment, and the second, like it, is this: 'You shall love your neighbour as yourself.'‌‌"

This command is still relevant for us today. But what does it mean to "love your neighbour as yourself‌‌"?

It reminds us of the story of the good Samaritan who helped the man in need. Like him, we should also help relieve the suffering of the people around us. But we are called to do more. Ellen White wrote in the Review and Heard, February 5, 1884: ‌‌"Dear brethren and sisters, when you become imbued with the missionary spirit, when you learn to love your neighbors as yourself, you will not be content to see souls perishing all around you without doing all you can to save them.‌‌"

But we can't do this by ourselves. Zechariah 4:6 says, ‌‌"Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit.‌‌"

For such a time as this, let us show love to our neighbours by proclaiming God's final messages of love to the world—the three angels' messages—proclaiming the everlasting gospel, worshipping God as our Creator, and recognizing that the time of His judgement has come. And let us receive the seal of God rather than the mark of the beast.