A New Year’s Prayer…
Dear Father God, Our times are in Your hands, and we are glad of that. Even though fear threatens us, troubles us and, even, sometimes terrifies us, it cannot win because our times are in Your hands. The coming year holds many challenges, many enemies, many questions and, perhaps, many trials, but we will take them on because we know our times are in Your hands. Not one of us, nor all of us combined, feel sufficient for the future, but we will not give in to worry because our times are in Your hands.
We praise You for not leaving us lonely…for not leaving us to our own devices…for not giving up on us as we so richly deserve. We are in awe that Your holy Love yet seeks us out for fellowship and blessing…that knowing us as well as You do, You still want us…that You refuse to allow our repeated failures to tarnish Your regard for us. How can Your Grace be that Amazing, O Lord?! Because of You we do not believe that all that has been in our lives is all that can ever be. No, we believe that the best is yet to be for all your beloved! Dear Lord, we freely confess the very obvious truth that we are not at all what we ought to be. But Your lasting “I love you” which we experience in our Savior’s Cross is the very life-giving atmosphere of our lives in which we live and breathe and move with vibrant hope. Truly, dear Father, You love us with an everlasting love. We wish to honor Your love by believing it, accepting it and relying on it always. Your love, Father God, is better than life.
You are the reason for our dreams. Because of You we dream of holiness…of a better world…of justice…of peace…of brotherhood…of kindness. Because of You we dream of a world where Jesus is known by all and worshipped in spirit and truth by people on every continent, in every country, in every state, in every village or hamlet or hut. Because of You we have dreams for Your church…that she will be a beautiful bride who reflects Your glory and truth as she pursues Your mission in this world…that she will be adorned in garments of praise and righteousness…that she will live and serve in love…that she will be relevant in an out of touch world…that she will so united and loving that others will see she can only be Yours and that they will want to be Yours also and join her in the greatest Cause of all the ages, bringing lost ones to the saving and changing Love of God.
You have been our Home through all the changing years of our lives. You are the God of Abraham and Moses and James and John. And You are our God also. It took us a while to come to that understanding, but You are a faithful Shepherd. You have been so patiently leading us to Yourself. You are what we want, Father God. We can have no rest in this world apart from You. If You will not go with us then we don’t want to go. But if You will be in this world with us, then all is well. And if we can be in the next world with You, then that is enough for us. Do we really mean that? Is that really enough for us, Lord? Well, we want to mean it, Father, more and more. We want You to be our all in all.
Yes, Father, we praise You that our times, even including the year 2008, are in Your hands. If it be a year of further service for You, we are ready. If it be the year of our homecoming, we are ready. To You we give all glory. Amen.