I have always enjoyed the opportunity which the end of a year brings – the opportunity to review the past, assess the present and make plans for the future. John Wesley always led his followers, the early Methodists, to use this season of the year to renew their covenant with the living God.
The secular world knows nothing of covenant, but many people are fond of making New Year Resolutions – even though most of them will probably be broken by the end of the first week of the new year! A resolution, without understanding of the reasons why the resolution has become necessary, will invariably end up on the scrap heap of impossible dreams and unfulfilled ambitions!
So, what, as believers, can we do at this time of the year to redeem the season? One answer to that question lies in our Scripture for today. Our innermost being is the source of the decisions we make and the things we do – both good and bad. It is here that the motives of the heart have their origin and another proverb (Proverbs 16:2) tells us that it is the motives of the heart that are weighed by the Lord.
It is so easy for us to deceive ourselves and for our ways to seem innocent to us (also in Proverbs 16:2), even though they may be far from innocent! As a result we become blinded, even to what those innermost motives are! We need help – and help is at hand. For this Scripture tells us that the lamp of the Lord will search out our innermost being. So our prayer for this last day of the year is simply to ask the Lord to shine His lamp into the recesses of our heart and to show us what He sees! We will then have some great material to address with the Lord as we renew our covenant with Him as children of the King, who have chosen to follow Him in the work of the Kingdom of God.
Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that You are able to see into the inner recesses of my heart. Please shine your lamp and help me to see those things that are displeasing to You, so that, with Your help, I can make lasting and fruitful changes in my life. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
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