The night has advanced toward dawn; the day is near. So then we must lay aside the works of darkness, and put on the weapons of light. – Rom 13:12 NET
Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light:
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.
Ring out old shapes of foul disease,
Ring out the narrow lust of gold:
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.
Let every dawn of morning be to you as the beginning of life, and every setting sun be to you as its close.
My Father, as I look to the past days, I feel much of my happiness and much of my misery has come from my own choice. May I be more watchful of my standards and less wasteful of my time, and keep a poise in life that will leave a memory of well-spent days. For the year that has passed and for its blessings I thank thee. Amen.
“The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.” — Jer 8:20
Not saved! Dear reader, is this your mournful plight? Warned of the judgment to come, bidden to escape for your life, and yet at this moment not saved! You know the way of salvation, you read it in the Bible, you hear it from the pulpit, it is explained to you by friends, and yet you neglect it, and therefore you are not saved. You will be without excuse when the Lord shall judge the quick and dead. The Holy Spirit has given more or less of blessing upon the word which has been preached in your hearing, and times of refreshing have come from the divine presence, and yet you are without Christ. All these hopeful seasons have come and gone-your summer and your harvest have past-and yet you are not saved. Years have followed one another into eternity, and your last year will soon be here: youth has gone, manhood is going, and yet you are not saved. Let me ask you-will you ever be saved? Is there any likelihood of it? Already the most propitious seasons have left you unsaved; will other occasions alter your condition? Means have failed with you-the best of means, used perseveringly and with the utmost affection-what more can be done for you? Affliction and prosperity have alike failed to impress you; tears and prayers and sermons have been wasted on your barren heart. Are not the probabilities dead against your ever being saved? Is it not more than likely that you will abide as you are till death for ever bars the door of hope? Do you recoil from the supposition? Yet it is a most reasonable one: he who is not washed in so many waters will in all probability go filthy to his end. The convenient time never has come, why should it ever come? It is logical to fear that it never will arrive, and that Felix like, you will find no convenient season till you are in hell. O bethink you of what that hell is, and of the dread probability that you will soon be cast into it!
Reader, suppose you should die unsaved, your doom no words can picture. Write out your dread estate in tears and blood, talk of it with groans and gnashing of teeth: you will be punished with everlasting destruction from the glory of the Lord, and from the glory of his power. A brother's voice would fain startle you into earnestness. O be wise, be wise in time, and ere another year begins, believe in Jesus, who is able to save to the uttermost. Consecrate these last hours to lonely thought, and if deep repentance be bred in you, it will be well; and if it lead to a humble faith in Jesus, it will be best of all. O see to it that this year pass not away, and you an unforgiven spirit. Let not the new year's midnight peals sound upon a joyless spirit! Now, NOW, NOW believe, and live.
“ESCAPE FOR THY LIFE;
LOOK NOT BEHIND THEE,
NEITHER STAY THOU IN ALL THE PLAIN;
ESCAPE TO THE MOUNTAIN,
LEST THOU BE CONSUMED.”
~ Charles Spurgeon ~
As this year draws to a close, receive My Peace. This is still your deepest need, and I, your Prince of Peace, long to pour Myself into your neediness. My abundance and your emptiness are a perfect match. I designed you to have no sufficiency of your own. I created you as a jar of clay, set apart for sacred use. I want you to be filled with My very Being, permeated through and through with Peace.
Thank Me for My peaceful Presence, regardless of your feelings.Whisper My Name in loving tenderness. My Peace, which lives continually in your spirit, will gradually work its way through your entire being.
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.
—2 Corinthians 4:7
But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
~ Sarah Young ~
THE PERFECTIONS OF GOD
Give unto the Lord the glory due unto his name; worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness.
I hope that if I am remembered at all, it will be for this reason: I have spent my efforts and my energies trying to turn the direction of the people away from the external elements of religion to those that are internal and spiritual.
I have tried to take away some of the clouds in the hope that men and women would be able to view God in His glory. I would like to see this sense of glory recaptured throughout the church—too many Christians do not expect to experience any of the glory until they see Him face-to-face!
Within our Christian fellowship and worship, we must recapture the Bible concepts of the perfection of our God Most High! We have lost the sense and the wonder of His awe-fullness, His perfection, His beauty.
Oh, I feel that we should preach it, sing it, write about it, talk about it and tell it until we have recaptured the concept of the Majesty of God!
Only that can be beautiful ultimately which is holy—and we who belong to Jesus Christ should know the true delight of worshiping God in the beauty of His holiness!
Dear Lord, on the last day of this year, I pray for Your Church in the coming New Year, that it will be biblically faithful, Christ-centered and proactive in its fight against the forces of evil. May the name of the Lord Jesus Christ be praised in every nation!
~ Aiden Wilson Tozer ~
Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself to have attained this. Instead I am single-minded: Forgetting the things that are behind and reaching out for the things that are ahead, with this goal in mind, I strive toward the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. – Phil 3:13-14 NET
Yet I argue not
Against Heaven’s hand or will, nor bate a jot
Of heart or hope; but still bear up and steer
It is not by regretting what is irreparable that true work is to be done, but by making the best of what we are. It is not by complaining that we have not the right tools, but by using well the tools we have. What we are, and where we are, is God’s providential arrangement,—God’s doing, though it may be man’s misdoing; and the manly and the wise way is to look your disadvantages in the face, and see what can be made out of them. Life, like war, is a series of mistakes, and he is not the best Christian nor the best general who makes the fewest false steps. He is the best who wins the most splendid victories by the retrieval of mistakes. Forget mistakes; organize victory out of mistakes.
—F. W. ROBERTSON
“And we desire that each one of you show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope until the end, that you do not become sluggish, but imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises.”
Father God another year is about to come to a close. Looking back, I missed some steps, I spoke when I should have kept quiet, and strayed from Your side a few too many times. Forgive me. If You should bless me to step over into this next year, I want to do better. Amen