Jesus is our Promise Keeper! He has protected you this past year from untold tragedy, misfortune, and peril. We look at all that has happened, but so often we don't think about what might have happened. Maybe you lost your house this past year, a terrible thing, but you still have your family. Maybe you lost a loved one this year, but you are not here in the world alone. Imagine the destruction that could have come your way that the Lord prevented.
If we could only see with spirit eyes the battle all around us: angels protecting our health, lives, loved ones, possessions and honor. We can only see what God allows to make us stronger in Him, not all that He keeps the enemy from inflicting. I encourage you to enter 2012 with worship, prayer, and God's Word. Why not gather together on New Year's Eve with other believers who are serious about the things of God. Seek His face together as the New Year starts. Forget the ball dropping in Times Square! How about worship instead!
Right now our church meets on Saturday nights because we share a building with another church. So, our usual Saturday night celebration will be followed by a party. Then, as the hour approaches, we will gather together to worship and pray. We will welcome 2012 with Jesus in the center of our celebration.
They are related to my walk with the Lord, my relationship with my husband and children, mentoring ladies, friends, extended family, leading worship, homeschooling, writing, health, finances, and even my dreams. These goals are just between the Lord and me, but they matter to both of us. I really try to hear from the Lord as I make out my goals for the next year. Our God is good. We don't always understand His ways in our life.
"When they had gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream, 'Get up,' he said, 'take the child and his mother and escape to Egypt. Stay there until I tell you, for Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.' So he got up, took the child and his mother during the night and left for Egypt, where he stayed until the death of Herod. And so was fulfilled what the Lord had said through the prophet: 'Out of Egypt I called my son.' When Herod realized that he had been outwitted by the Magi, he was furious, and he gave orders to kill all the boys in Bethlehem and its vicinity who were two years old and under, in accordance with the time he had learned from the magi. Then what was said through the prophet Jeremiah was fulfilled: 'A voice is heard in Ramah, weeping and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted, because they are no more,'" (Matthew 2:13-18 NIV).
Mary and Joseph had just experienced one miracle and prophetic word after another and then God speaks. He tells them to flee for their lives! What? The Messiah has to be protected? Isn't He God? By obeying the Lord, Jesus' life is spared, but many lives are taken. When destruction is raging, it is so important to incline your ear to hear from God. He will give you a path, but you must set time aside to listen for His voice.
When we hear the voice of the Lord and follow Him, we stay in His protection. Each stage of life has a season. It is important to stay in God's will at all times, in every season. Don't be afraid. After a season, God again spoke to Joseph in a dream and told him that he could bring Mary and Joseph back to Israel. They settled in Nazareth and enjoyed the favor and blessing of the Lord. Be filled with faith as you welcome 2012! Remember the promise in Jeremiah 29:11: God plans to prosper and not to harm us; plans to give us a hope and a future! We have every reason to celebrate! So, let's celebrate the New Year with Him and the ones we love!
May God bless and prosper you in 2012! May all your goals and dreams come to pass in His perfect plan and timing!
For the Joy Set Before Us!
(Meredith Ludwig Curtis)