Personally, I'm glad to send 2008 packing! Since this was the year that 1) my FIL was moved into an Alzheimer's facility, 2) my mother died (in the middle of Hurricane Ike, which caused a 10-day delay in her burial), and 3) I spent the last 2 months of the year dealing with a broken foot and learning how advanced my osteoporosis already is -- I am ready to move on to 2009.
Of course, economic uncertainty coupled with a probable layoff at my man's company, as well as the less-than-encouraging political horizon, doesn't make me too ecstatic about the coming year, either!
But then I think of what the year has the possibility of being in spiritual terms. And as Habakkuk says,
Though the fig tree does not bud
and there are no grapes on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though there are no sheep in the pen
and no cattle in the stalls,
I will rejoice in the LORD,
I will be joyful in God my Savior.
The Sovereign LORD is my strength;
He makes my feet like the feet of a deer,
He enables me to go on the heights.
There aren't too many hymns that focus specifically on New Year's, but you only need one when it's as good as this one.
In January, 1874 Frances Ridley Havergal sent her friends a New Year's greeting with a beautiful prayer of dedication she had written. She was known all over England as "the consecration poet." She was completely committed to serving God with her talents and abilities. She was "an accomplished pianist and vocalist, proficient in seven languages, possessing a keen mind (having memorized Psalms, Isaiah, the Minor Prophets, and the entire New Testament)."
Source: Amazing Grace: 365 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions by Kenneth W. Osbeck, Kregel Publications, 2002.
This tiny church sings this beautiful song whose melody is the same as The Church's One Foundation.
ANOTHER YEAR IS DAWNING Another year is dawning, dear Father, let it be
In working or in waiting, another year with Thee.
Another year of progress, another year of praise,
Another year of proving Thy presence all the days.
Another year of mercies, of faithfulness and grace,
Another year of gladness in the shining of Thy face;
Another year of leaning upon Thy loving breast;
Another year of trusting, of quiet, happy rest.
Another year of service, of witness for Thy love,
Another year of training for holier work above.
Another year is dawning, dear Father, let it be
On earth, or else in Heaven, another year for Thee.
WORDS: Frances R. Havergal
MUSIC: Samuel S. Wesley
May this be the prayer of all of us as we welcome 2009. Happy New Year!
View blog reactions