TIMES OF REFLECTION - PART 1
Times of reflection are moments to create space for God's Spirit to speak to us, helping us to vividly remember what He has done, making us aware of what He is doing, and stirring our hearts and spirit for what He wants to do next. Reflecting on this year which is about to run out is very important. What were your challenges? What were your triumphs? How did God get involved in both? Now is the best time for deep reflection, and as you reflect, take account of how you've walked with God this year and prepare yourself for His service next year.
Reference: Proverbs 3:5-6 English Standard Version (ESV) 'Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.'
Without complete reliance on or confidence in God, it's impossible to carry out any of the plans He's placed in our hearts in Christ. Never rely on what you think you know; instead, acknowledge Him with submission to Him in all your ways. Acknowledging God implies that we first ascertain whether all we are about to get involved in, is in accordance with His precepts, and then walk in His direction and illumination.
Now that the new year, filled with its possibilities and new beginnings, is quickly approaching, your heavenly Father, who dwells in all of eternity, longs to prepare you for what is to come. He longs to lay a foundation for your year with a fresh revelation of His love, faithfulness, and presence. He longs to fill you with hope and desires that He will see through to fruition (see Psalm 25:4-5). . What is God doing right now? What is He teaching and instilling in you? What is He calling you to anticipate? He wants you to foresee greater works and accomplishments and look beyond your personal needs. 'Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you' (Matthew 6:31-33 ESV).
Even as you savour the beauty of the present, resting in His goodness, God is readily present to meet with you, shower more of His love on you, and fill you with His fullness for greater works. He has new level of strength, grace, comfort, creativity, productivity and joy for you, as long as you create quality time and room to receive the fullness of what He wants to give. Remember He says, ''For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope' (Jeremiah 29:11 ESV).
God longs to fill you with fresh hope and expectancy for His future plans for you, which He already prepared beforehand, that you should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10 says, 'For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.' Therefore, allow God to propound and initiate new ideas and dreams for next year in your heart.
What do you want to see happen personally next year? What do you hope God would do in you and through you? What works has He prepared for you? How are you going to stay faithful to His work? Now is the time to prepare for these personal questions, by filling your heart with God's Word and praying in the Spirit magnificently.
Golden plan: Take time to envisage and allow God to prepare you for all that next year holds.
Scripture Reading - Deuteronomy 7:9; Jeremiah 42:3; Proverbs 28:26; Jeremiah 9:23; Proverbs 16:3.
Guided Prayer: Lord God, I want to thank you and acknowledge that my pathway is unclear without you. By reflecting and meditating on your Word this season, it will guide me as a beacon and a light. Regardless of the global challenges encountered in this year, I thank you for revealing your new plans and thoughts to me and showing me how to walk in them as the new year approaches. Hence my pathway is continually filled with your grace, mercy, revelation and love and I walk securely in it, fulfilling your purpose for my life in every step I take in Jesus' Name, Amen!