cropped-rose-4.gifPsalm 23:6, “Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life”

Once again we are closing yet another year and in a couple of days will be the beginning of a New Year. Many magazines, newspapers, and television programs chronicle the best and the worst of the past 12 months and offer predictions for the coming 365 days. If a newspaper or magazine were to do a feature on your life, what would it say about the best and worst of your year? Based on recent trends, what might it predict about your spiritual life in the months ahead? Your past doesn’t have to be your future. No matter how many times you have failed, God graciously offers His forgiveness for the shortsighted choices that reflected selfishness and lack of trust in Him. It’s also true that past successes don’t necessarily guarantee future victories.

Each day of 2013 will give us plenty of opportunities to be faithful servants for the Lord. I’m reminded of David who was certain that goodness and mercy would follow him all the days of his life, and this truth gives every trusting child of God assurance, especially on the threshold of a new and uncertain year. My brethren, as His child we have nothing to fear as the times and seasons including the coming New Year are in His hands (Psalm 31:15); for you see, God is in control. As a child of the King, we can walk with Him each day and join the psalmist in declaring, “As for me, I trust in You, O LORD; I say, ‘You are my God’” (Psalm 31:14). Frances Ridley Havergal (1836 – 1879), like David, was confident of her heavenly Father’s gracious purpose for her life, and she knew that He would be with her always. These truths moved her to write these words:

Another year is dawning: Dear Father, let it be,
In working or in waiting, another year with Thee;
Another year of progress, another year of praise,
Another year of proving Thy presence all the days.

Another year of mercies, of faithfulness and grace,
Another year of gladness in the shining of Thy face;
Another year of leaning upon Thy loving breast,
Another year of trusting, of quiet, happy rest.

Another year of service, of witness for Thy love;
Another year of training for holier work above.
Another year is dawning: Dear Father, let it be,
On earth or else in heaven, another year for Thee.

Closing thoughts:

As we close the final chapter of our life in 2012, may we begin a new year as dedicated and faithful servants to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ? The following should be the prayer of every born again believer in Christ. “Father, we surrender this past year and give it up to You. We give You our failures, our regrets, and our disappointments, for we have no more use for them. Make us now a new people, forgetting what lies behind and pressing on toward that which lies ahead of us. We give You all our hopes and dreams for the future. Purify them by Your Spirit so that our wills shall truly reflect Your will for us. As we stand on the threshold of another year, encourage us by our successes of the past, challenge us by the power of Your Word, and guide us by the presence of Your Holy Spirit.” Amen.

The believer’s future is as bright as the promises of God.