Skip to main content

Happy New Year!

Dear Friends,

I guess that since it's New Years Eve I should start by wishing you a Happy New Year! In fact, since it is New Years Eve, I started out earlier looking for a prayer to send out that would express what I would want for us all this upcoming year. Unfortunately I could not find one that said exactly what I hoped it would say, so I ended up writing one myself. I know my thoughts are usually taken from the books of others, but this one is from me personally to you. It's my prayer for all of us in the upcoming year. May His blessings rest upon you.

A New Year's Prayer
Merciful God - Father of our Lord Jesus Christ - we pause on this last day of December to give you thanks for so graciously sustaining us through yet another year. Forgive us that like little children hoping to receive even more gifts, we are so prone at times like this to forget to simply offer you thanks for all the countless blessings we have already received from your hand.

Whether we leave behind a year of joys and fond memories, or a year of difficulty and loss, we pause to offer you thanks. Not only have you sustained us through them all, you are changing us through them all – working all things together for the good of those who love you and are the called according to your purpose.

In all things we can have hope, for your promise is to renew, restore and complete the work you started in us. So true is your promise: Your mercies are new every morning – so great is your faithfulness. Thank you for the precious gift of new mercies that come with the dawning of each new day.

May the year to come be blessed - not by shielding us from all difficulties, but by drawing near to us to strengthen us for whatever comes. We ask not for the path of ease, but the path that brings us to cherish you more. Not the path of unbroken sunshine, but the path where the sense of your presence rains down to refresh our thirsty souls even in our struggles and hardships.

And Father, in a world where self-concern and self-interest so dominate, move us to be more selfless. Make us more alert to the struggles of others, quicker to care, more willing to sacrifice, and far more civil, wise, understanding, compassionate and loving to every neighbor and stranger in need. We ask these things in the name of Jesus, your Son and our Lord. May His kingdom come, and His will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Amen.

Until next year, may His grace rest upon you all, Pastor Jeff


Popular posts from this blog

Thoughts From Rick Hamlin

Dear Friends, This "thought" will likely seem more relevant to those who are past the child-rearing stage -- though it can surely offer hope to those who are in the midst of it! It was the March 1st reading from my 2018 edition of the Daily Guideposts devotional which I quoted from a few weeks back. The author of this particular entry is Rick Hamlin. It struck me as an entry that offers hope to the burdened conscience, and for that reason I pass it along to any parents who may need the encouragement it offers. Enjoy. "You will hurl all our sins into the depths of the sea." Micah 7:19 "It's interesting what we can remember and what we regret. When I think about the kind of dad I was when my kids were younger, I hate to recall the times when the two of them tested my patience. Two boys, three years apart, roughhousing indoors, the playful tussling that turned into wrestling matches threatening to destroy

Thoughts About the History of Lent

Dear Friends, As today is “Shrove Tuesday” and Lent begins tomorrow, I thought I would pass along some interesting facts about the history of Lent. Sometimes we know about it, but don’t really know about it! So, for today, I have put together some background information about Lent. Information varies depending on the source, but I tried to weave together an accurate, historically reliable, and generally accepted summary of the basic facts! Enjoy. Lent is the approximate 40-day season between Ash Wednesday and Easter, during which Catholic, Eastern Orthodox and Protestant believers prepare themselves spiritually for Easter through prayer, Bible reading, and a focus on spiritual disciplines like fasting, self-denial, and a commitment to acts of generosity. The word “lent” comes from the Old English word “lencten” meaning “length” and was used to refer to the springtime season in the Northern Hemisphere when the days were lengthening as the sun rose earlier and set later. Lent is

Thoughts From Tim Challies

Dear Friends, I know it's Holy Week and most of you were probably expecting an Easter "thought." But it will not be. Not this year anyway! Instead, I wanted to send out a thought that has to do with prayer. Expectant prayer. Believing prayer. Earnest prayer. Prayer that actually anticipates that it will receive what is asked for. Prayer that is offered not only believing God is able, but also willing. Not simply that God can (which we all know), but that He will (which some often doubt). I know (since some have told me) that some believers consider the second part -- the conviction that He will -- as being a bit presumptuous, or contrary to a humble posture before God. But if I read the words of Jesus correctly, it seems to be an attitude He wants us as God's children to have when praying to Him who is our Father. Today's selection happens to be from Tim Challies, and is entitled "Expecting Results." Enjoy. "When you pray, petitionin