I have one word to welcome 2013 – Triskaidekaphobia – fear of the number 13. For those who survived the end of the world on the Mayan calendar, Dec. 21, there is a new terror — a year ending in 13. Technically triskaidekaphobia relates to the fear of Friday the 13th, but some paranoid people are applying it to this New Year. The word comes from the Greek tris which means 3; kai which means “and”; deka meaning “10” to which is added phobos meaning “morbid fear.”

Some say this fear is rooted in the fact there were 13 people at the Last supper, Jesus being number 13 who was betrayed. Others think it came from the 12 signs of the astrological zodiac representing order, and thus 13 would be a sign of chaos. Freemasons get in on the act. They think that on Friday the 13th, 1307, the Knights Templars began to suffer persecution under Philip IV of France. To combat such silliness, a 19th century group call the Thirteen Club, met in New York every Friday the 13th at 8:13 pm, and 13 people ate in a room numbered 13 – after entering by walking under a ladder. Even President Theodore Roosevelt joined the group.

I want to assure you there is nothing to fear in 2013. I don’t know what will happen, but if God is for us who can be against us (Rom 8:31). As for me, 2012 was the year I almost died and spent four months sidelined, bringing the ministry to a financially dangerous point. I’m thrilled that it’s 2013. No number and no phobia can keep me from experiencing all that God has in store. To me, 13 will be a number of health, prosperity, goodness, and favor. Will you join me in that declaration? And the next seminar city I go to, I’ll be perfectly happy to stay on the 13th floor, even if they have it numbered 14.