Sunday, January 09, 2011

Welcome to 2011

Happy New Year
The Lord Is Waiting For Us In 2011 

"For the LORD your God is bringing you into is a good land, a land of brooks of water, of fountains and springs, that flow out of valleys and hills; a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive oil and honey; a land in which you will eat bread without scarcity, in which you will lack nothing; a land whose stones are iron and out of whose hills you can dig copper. When you have eaten and are full, then you shall bless the LORD your God for the good land which He has given you” (Deuteronomy 8:7-10)
For the land which you go to possess is not like the land of Egypt from which you have come, where you sowed your seed and watered it by foot, as a vegetable garden; but the land which you cross over to possess is a land of hills and valleys, which drinks water from the rain of heaven, a land for which the LORD your God cares; the eyes of the LORD your God are always on it, from the beginning of the year to the very end of the year.” (Deuteronomy 11:10-12)
The year 2010 will in a few hours pass into history and shall never again be with us. At the same time we stand at the verge of the unknown 2011. There lies before us a brand New Year and we are marching forward to possess it. Who can tell what we shall find in 2011? There are a few things we shall at least, expect to find – new experiences, new changes that shall come, new needs that shall arise and new and perhaps sterner measures.

In the passage above we have a few cheering words to comfort and gladden our hearts. The words are weightier especially as they came from our heavenly Father “...the Lord your God cares; His eyes are upon the land from the beginning of the year to the very end of the year”. Nothing can be more comforting than to learn that God cares and that His eyes are watching over us.

“The land is a land of hills and valleys”: It is not going to be all smooth nor shall it be all downhill. The hills collect the rains for the valleys to produce the fruits. The hills signify difficulty and the difficulties should drive us to the throne of grace and bring down the showers of blessing. We often wonder at the hills in our lives – the hills of austerity, the hills of retrenchment and loss of source of livelihood, the hills of illness and the hills of death of loved ones – the hills in our lives. If we will but for a few minutes give it a second thought, we would be amazed at the showers of blessings that come down from these hills. Let us this year not stop at the foot of the hills and grumble, but let us attempt scaling over them to harvest the riches of the blessings. How many have perished in the wilderness buried under its golden sands, who would have lived and thriven in the hill-country; how many would have been killed by the frost blighted with winds, swept desolate of tree and fruit but for the hills -stern, hard, rugged, so steep to climb. God’s hills are a gracious protection for His people against their foes! We cannot tell what loss and sorrow and trials are doing. We are only expected to trust that God who loves us so has allowed them to come for our good. We know that the gardener is never as close to the tree as when he is pruning it, - so our Father comes near us to take our hands and lead us on our way through the year 2011. All He is asking us to do is to trust and obey.

A land for which the Lord your God cares: God cares sufficiently to provide all our supply. Here in the land are springs that shall never dry; here are fountains and streams that shall never be cut off. We find in these words a pledge from our Heavenly Father; God who is the source of all mercies – and He has promised that His supplies shall never fail. We have every cause to depend on His pledges. His air supply, light supply and water supply have never failed. The sun has always risen and set at the appointed time. God has never failed anyone and will never fail. This year, He shall supply all our need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. We therefore have this cheering pledge to pin our hopes on.

As we are entering the new 2011 if we have rightly learned our lessons of the past, there lies before us a heritage of unspeakable blessing. We have no words to describe what lies before us. We need therefore to review our dealings with the Lord in the year that is passing by.

New Year’s Day has a way of creating in us sober reflections, a way of making us to make resolutions which may or may not be kept. We have in the dying 2010 passed through experiences that may not be easy to forget. We have had causes to look back and say “If God had not been with us, it would have ...” Perhaps also we have been found in such tight corners that we have been forced to promise “God, if, only you bring me out of this, I shall ...” but many of us have forgotten the promise as soon as we came out of the hooks. Many of us have in the year looked to God as a magic wand or miracle worker – Father who is only called when we cannot help ourselves. God had in most of the times answered us speedily. It is not because that is how best to deal with God and how best He wants us to be related to Him; it is only because He is giving us a chance of knowing Him. This chance however does not last forever.

God would want us to be rightly related to Him in 2011 All the promises of blessings, springs, unlimited supplies and all will avail us nothing if we as a nation; as a people, as individuals, are not rightly related to Him. We are reminded that “righteousness exalts a nation, it exalts a people and it exalts an individual, but sin is a reproach to a nation, to every people”

Rulers have tried in the way they know best to return the nation to the path of rectitude; hence the launching of the "Rebranding of the Nation, One Man; One Vote". They have also made laws, all in an attempt to restrain the growth of the nation in the wrong direction. Man is essentially a moral being but in him is a very indomitable will. God describes this will in the following words: “Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” Genesis 6:5 (NKJV). Later God will add to this when He said: "The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; who can know it? I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give every man according to his ways, According to the fruit of his doings.” (Jeremiah 17:9-10 NKJV)

God in His judgment has been giving us what we really do not deserve. He has been very merciful to us and expects us to return to Him for a thorough surgical operation, so that all the rebranding, wars against indiscipline, hunger and hard drugs will work and then we shall begin to enjoy the abundance of God’s blessings. Only God can test the heart. Only God can deliver the right dose of the curative medicine for our national and individual malady. God has given us 2011 as a year of our return to Him. If we do, we shall reap a bumper harvest of His blessings. It shall be a good and a blessed New Year if we shall this year, return to the Lord our God and our Maker. Come to Him and He will abundantly pardon, cleanse and bless you.

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