2005-12-29 - A Pause
Heb 13:3 Remember them that are in bonds, as bound with them; and them which suffer adversity, as being yourselves also in the body. (KJV)
We meet the end of another year in just a few days. It is a reason to celebrate for most of us. There are often parties and gatherings of friends and family with snacks and drinks and meals. There will be music and dancing, and kisses at midnight. The ball will drop again in Times Square in New York City at midnight to thunderous applause.
Even as all this begins to swirl around us all, take a minute to look back over the year and take stock. We are a blessed in ways that many of us don't even realize. We often take what we have for granted. Most of us are in good health along with our families. Most of us have a warm home or apartment to live and in which to sleep. We have books, and movies and time to enjoy them. We have cars, or access to transportation. We have many things that two generations ago were pure science fiction. Reflect on your blessings as these last few days are marked off.
Some are in the midst of hardships, on the cusp of losing or having recently lost a loved one, suffered a serious injury or other loss. There were several powerful hurricanes this year, and not everyone has a home or even their basic possessions. There was a massive tidal wave in the Indian Ocean, and several powerful earthquakes, particularly the one in Pakistan that have left tens of thousands homeless. Many others struggle to make financial ends meet. Remember these people, who Jesus died for, who struggle with prayers, visits or phone calls.
The end of this year is not a period, it's a comma - a simple pause. Take advantage of the pause and take a breath. Take stock of what God has done for you, and look for your opportunities to pray for others. There are so many in bonds, in this country and around the world, who need prayer along with their families. The needs, even close to home, are numerous without digging too deeply.
Regroup. Give thanks. Pray and visit. Happy New Year.
Grace & Peace,