Those are the words that the Father speaks about Jesus at His baptism (Matthew 3:17). The Father loves the Son and is “well pleased” with Him. What’s interesting about this is that at this point in His ministry, Jesus hasn’t really done anything. He’s just beginning. And yet the Father announces that He takes delight in Him and is in fact proud of Him. It is a picture of grace. The Father’s “well pleased” pronouncement isn’t based on Jesus’ accomplishments. It’s based on the love of the Father.
Jesus’ baptism is a model for our own. Although to all appearances our baptisms aren’t as dramatic as Jesus’ – we don’t see the heavens torn open, see doves flying down, and audibly hear the Father’s voice – the same pronouncement is made regarding us: “Here is my son. Here is my daughter, whom I love. With him, with her, I am well pleased.”
Maybe you are beginning to make plans for a new year, resolutions to improve what you do, habits that lead to greater health, or practices that improve your growth in other areas. That’s all well and good, and may God bless you in those endeavors. But one thing that we can’t make a resolution to improve on is the amount of love that we receive from the Father. His pronouncement of love, His taking delight in us isn’t based on what we have accomplished, or what we resolve to accomplish in the new year. But rather it is based solely on His love for us.
So as you head off into a new year, may you step off from this foundation. You are a child of the Father, who loves you, and He is delighted in you, as He always will be.