I’ve been staring at a blank computer screen. There are days when I love a blank screen. No mistakes, and I can fill it with my own words and thoughts. But blank screens are challenging. I am responsible for filling the page. I have the ability to speak words of life or words of destruction.

A new year is much like a blank screen. The unknown lies before us, but we have great power over what will mark the pages of our life in a new year and how it will take place. To be sure, some things will happen that are beyond our control. But in the end, we will control our response.

Two thousand nine stands before us with remarkable potential. I can yield my life to the Savior and allow His life to be lived through me, or I can chart my own course. It is my choice. I can be wildly successful in the eyes of the world, or I can make a difference in the world and eternity by the way I live and speak.

Day after day, I meet people who have filled life’s blank pages with bad decisions, wrong actions and hurtful ways. Many believe “fate” has filled their pages with misery. On the contrary-most of the misery is self inflicted. A new year provides the opportunity to turn life around. We do not have to live life in the pit.

I challenge you to begin 2009 determined to climb out of the pit and get into the action. Live life so as to be missed. Step up to a new level of giving yourself away in the cause of Christ and for the good of others. The sweetest story to be written in 2009 is the story of a life well lived to the glory of God and the benefit others.

One way to invigorate life is to perform random acts of kindness. Surprise your spouse or a family member by doing something that will be a blessing, small or great. Find ways to lift people who have fallen or who are in misery. If you think you are facing tough circumstances, look around. I promise there are multitudes confronting much tougher situations. Bless somebody! Fill your blank page with acts of love that demonstrate a changed heart and soul.

My blank pages are most often filled with words. In fact, my life is filled with words. One of my primary roles is speaking. I am asked for opinions about everything. I am accustomed to speaking easily and sometimes very casually. I am keenly aware of the power of words to heal or hurt. Look into the eyes of a child who has just been called a dummy by a parent. The pain will glare back at you. Look into the eyes of another child who has just heard a parent say, “I am so proud of you.” The difference is unmistakable.

My quiet time this morning was in James 3. The strong message of this powerful passage is that the tongue has enormous capacity for good or bad. I can praise God and bless others or I can curse them.

Each of us will write on the blank screen of life words that can change people’s destinies, attitudes and spirit. The screen is blank. So is the new year. With what words will you fill your screen in 2009? Will your words be “good medicine” to those around you? Will your family rejoice when you write on blank screen of your relationship? Will they be encouraged and challenged to new heights of living for Jesus?