So much has been said and written about the difficulties that have been part of 2020. As we now stand on the brink of 2021, there is every reason to be enthusiastic about this new year that lies before us.
I was reading some material from one of my favorite authors, J. Lee Grady. He was commenting on what we know for sure about 2021. Here is what he shared:
- We have a powerful Savior. Christmas is Christmas, whether we have big dinners together or celebrate alone. God became flesh and dwelt among us. Rejoice in the fact that Jesus came to earth and that He has saved you from sin and death.
- His blessings are overflowing. Psalm 103:2 says, “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits.” Have you thanked Him this year for health, protection, financial provision and all the other ways He has cared for you?
- The church has thrived in a challenging season. In spite of canceled services and empty church buildings, we’ve learned to use technology in 2020 so that our outreach extends farther than ever. We would never have learned these new methods of ministry if the pandemic hadn’t force us to change.
- God’s people are praying in unprecedented ways. The challenges of 2020 drew many Christians into their prayer closets. We went deeper in intimacy with God. Prayer is arising like floodwaters all over the world, preparing us for a great spiritual awakening.
- The Holy Spirit is still moving. God’s Spirit has not been social distancing during this pandemic. He has been drawing people to faith in Christ during these dark times. In 2020 I led an immigrant to Jesus, and he is now sharing his faith with his friends in India.
- Jesus is still on the throne. No matter who occupies the White House, Isaiah 9:6 says of the Messiah: “…the government shall be upon His shoulder.” Don’t let an election steal your joy. If your candidate didn’t win, God can still protect our freedoms and guide our nation back to Him.
- His light shines in the darkness. I hated 2020 mostly because of all the hatefulness and political conflict that raged in our streets and in our social media posts. Relationships were severed this year because of strife; even families have been divided. Yet we know that when the darkness gets darker, God’s light shines brighter. We can rejoice that in the midst of chaos, confusion and moral depravity, the message of the gospel will become even clearer in contrast.
2020 wasn’t easy, but we will find many sweet surprises in this bitter year if we learn to rejoice in every situation.