With the emotional hangover of the New Year over for most, energies are high as people focus on all the goals they have set for 2017.
But as many people know, resolutions and change can be hard.
Lead Pastor Mark Alt is hoping to help people find new approaches and use their faith to actually be successful at what they hope to change in the new year.
He hopes to help people ponder and answer the question: “How do I do the things that God has put in my heart to do?”
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But change can be hard, especially when we have already failed once.
“Our natural human tendency is to blame other people,” Alt said. “When we blame we are giving power to actually change the future. Blame never leads us into to your future, it keeps us chained to our past.”
Beginning Sunday, The Bridge Church in Bradenton will being a five-week-long sermon series “Restart” to help people succeed with New Year’s resolutions.
“Everybody has gone through garbage and we have all learned ways of surviving,” Alt said. “A lot of them may have worked well, but then when we are trying to have relationships with people and God, it sometimes hinders our ability to have connections with people and God.”
The sermon series will focus on helping people tackle changes in all aspects of their lives including relationships, finances and their career. Alt hopes to help people see why they may have failed in the past trying to make changes, and give them the practical skills to be successful this time, he said.
He also hopes that it will help people see how they can be empowered to make a change through faith in God.
“To be able to see it from a difficult perspective and to let go of those root issues that keep making them make the same mistakes over and over again will be the key,” Alt said.
Sometime it is people’s inner monologue people that gets in the way, he hopes to help people see.
“You could sit in a church pew all day long, and it doesn’t matter, if you are sitting there running a different sermon inside in your head, that is contradicting because of the shame that lives inside of you,” Alt said.
While most of the sermon series will be lead by Alt, on Jan. 15 the Bridge Church will have a special guest for a service called “Financial Freedom: How to fund your dream.” The service will be held at 6 p.m. and will help those who are tired of living paycheck to paycheck.
Anyone interested in going is asked to register at bridgechurchfl.com.
The idea for the sermon series came out of the desire to help people start fresh in the new year because that’s the rhythm that’s felt, he said.
Alt welcomes anyone to come to The Bridge and listen to “Restart.”
“For some people it’s scary just going to a new church,” Alt said.
But he said if people allow room for God to do the work, they will see that he always has our best interests in mind.
“It’s really helping people to pause and to be able to reflect and really learn how to trust God because its through our trust and faith in God that we are able to stop those patterns that have been toxic in our past,” Alt said. “But its not an automatic. He wants us know him; he wants us to be able to find freedom; discover their purpose and be able to make their difference.”