Daily Bread

Daily Devotions with Pastor Chuck

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It is the last day of the year. To some of us this past year was a good one, to some a difficult one, and to some of us maybe a year of little consequence or notice. But think upon this . . . God graciously gave us, counting today, 365 days in which to praise Him and thank Him and serve Him . . . no matter our circumstances. Blessed be His name! 
My Scripture text for today is found at the very end of the book of Ecclesiastes,

  • “The Preacher sought to find delightful words and to write words of truth correctly . . . The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.” (Ecclesiastes 12:10, 12-13 – NASB)

So . . . . it is that day, that time that we ceremoniously refer to as “New Year’s Eve.” It is a festive time in most people’s minds with the following day being recognized as an official holiday. New Year’s day is a day of parades and sporting events and parties, and for most, a day off from work. As the new year is but hours away it is thought by many, “We can have a new start, we can wipe the slate clean from a year gone by and have a fresh new year to work with.” 
In the midst of all the ceremony and celebration people make what are commonly called, “New Year’s resolutions.” The word resolution means, “a formal expression of opinion or intention made . . . a determination . . . the act of resolving or determining a course of action.” That says it! “Determining a course of action.” As the New Year comes into being people all around the world are in a mood of “determining a course of action.” This determination is meant to fulfill the desires of their hearts. 
One might say that “The Preacher,” who penned the inspired words of the book of Ecclesiastes, was in a state of constantly   “determining a course of action.” He was looking to fulfill the desires of his heart. He “sought to find delightful words,” something we can all relate with, and he sought to “write words of truth correctly.” Again, something we can relate with. Maybe these would not be our “resolutions” for the New Year but I think his “conclusion” is certainly worthy of our consideration;

  • “fear God and keep His commandments”

God says to us through “the Preacher,” do this . . . 

  • “because this applies to every person.” 

If we are going to make a New Year’s resolution, and there is nothing wrong in doing that, then what we need to do is to take counsel from God’s Word. We need to activate our will to do His will, to determine our course of action to be, to “fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.” 
Wise counsel would be to do this because, when all things are considered, it is what really matters . . . 

  • “For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.”

And so I leave with you these words from God as you consider a course of action for the New Year, a “resolution.” Surely it is a most profitable one to pursue, would you not agree? And surely it should be our heart’s desire.
Have a good day brethren . . . and as you walk, fear God and keep His commandments (noting John 14:21, 23; 15:9-10).

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