Happy New Year everyone. I hope you had a fantastic, restful and fun filled break! As we start this New Year we are going to be looking at some of the promises that God makes in the Bible. In my first blog post about Hope, I spoke about the fact that Christian hope is being sure that the promises God makes will happen and become actuality. It therefore seemed fitting to consider some of those promises that God made thousands of years ago, and how they can still be promises to hold on to today.
The first promise we are going to look at is that we are not alone. The verse this is based on is Deuteronomy 31:8
The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.
January is a time when we start to think about the year ahead. We may have made resolutions, things that we are going to try and do – whether that is stopping eating junk food; doing more exercise; spending more time with family; trying harder with school work; or spending less time on games.
We start off with great ambitions but we never know how the year is going to pan out. The great thing about this promise is that we may not know but we are told that God has gone ahead of us, He has prepared the way for us, and He will be with us all the time. This is such a fantastic promise. It doesn’t say that life is going to be perfect and wonderful and rosy. But it does say that we will never be alone, God will always be at our side.
When I first moved to Canterbury I was 19 years old, and I had always lived at home, in Birmingham with my parents. Suddenly I was 200 miles away and I had to provide and cook for myself. My parents had given me provisions, they had prepared things for me, but they had to leave me. The great thing was, I knew they were on the end of the phone, and that I could go home whenever I needed to. That is still the case now, even though I’ve been married for 11 years!
It is even better with God, because He is there at our side all of the time. Because of that we do not need to be afraid about anything, or discouraged when things don’t go according to our plan.
Last week I went to London to see Wicked (it was SO good) when we were sitting in a restaurant eating some lunch I saw a family of four all on their phones looking on social media, texting, etc… We live in a time when it is so easy to be in touch with people and yet we can often feel alone. Just look at the infamous John Lewis Christmas advert.
It is very easy for me to write that God is by our side and with us at all times; but it is very difficult to recognise that sometimes. However, we can be God to others. If we see that someone is struggling, upset, lonely – we can ask how they are, ask them to spend time with us. God works in mysterious ways, and God works through us.
Prayer: Father God, we thank you that you have gone ahead of us, and prepared a way. We thank you that you are always with us. That we never need to be worried or anxious because you are by our side. Amen.
Challenge: As you think about what 2016 is going to bring for you. Think about what you can bring to others in 2016 to ensure that they know they are not alone.
Written by Mrs H Netherton