Thought for January

‘Remember this and stand firm, recall it to mind, you transgressors, remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose’ Isaiah 46:8-10 (ESV)

After all the business and excitement of Christmas, life is returning to normal for most of us as we enter another New Year. It’s a time to reflect on the past year and make plans for the year ahead and so we enter 2018 with hopes, expectations, maybe some trepidation or even fear depending on our circumstances. Yet as we step forward into the unknown we, as believers, do so with an assurance and comfort that comes from knowing and resting in the Lord. He has carried us as individuals and as a fellowship through 2017 with all its ups and downs. It was a year when we celebrated 80 years of God’s faithfulness to our fellowship and it was a year where we mourned the loss of loved ones called home to glory yet in the midst of it all our God was at work and showed his grace and love. As we enter another year with all its unknowns why should we think we will find the unchanging and unchangeable God any different. As the well-known hymn declares:

I know Who holds the future, And He’ll guide me with his hand.
With God things don’t just happen; Everything by Him is planned.
So as I face tomorrow, With its problems large and small,
I’ll trust the God of miracles, Give to Him my all.

The verse above from Isaiah shows that our God is great, there is none like Him and that he knows the beginning from the end, He knows what 2018 will bring. Yet nothing will happen outside His will or understanding and His purposes will be accomplished. If that is the God we serve then we can certainly go into another year, indeed every year, with a peace that whatever comes, good or bad, joy or sorrow he is in control and is using it all for the good of His people and the glory of His name. So take heart, take confidence and trust in the Lord for He is good and His steadfast love endures forever.
May I wish you all a happy and blessed New Year and I pray that 2018 will be a year where you feel the Lords leading and one in which you will be used mightily in His service.

Every Blessing

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