As the year comes to a close, it is inevitable that there will be some introspection. What happened the past 12 months? How did we spend our days? What victories are there to celebrate and what defeats are there to learn from? What dreams were fulfilled, what dreams were stalled, and what dreams burned to the flames of disappointment?
The wise (I think), will do introspection with a backdrop of the broader life in which they exist. They will think about their life with a perspective on cultural shift, moral changes, political upheavals, natural disasters, new births and unexpected deaths – and in all those things (and more) the wise will consider how their life lives in and affects and is affected by each of those things. The unwise will do introspection on an island, with self at the center.
The godly will of course do what the wise does, but will do so with an even broader backdrop – God Himself. For the godly, introspection is rightly done three steps out from the center; for it is Jesus, the God-man, and his purposes that are at the center of this thing called life. Behind all that has happened in 2013 (and hence, the answer to our introspection), is God working out His plan and purposes for the exaltation of Jesus and the good of His people. The godly find comfort in this.
Last year, on the last Sunday of 2012, I preached a message entitled:
“Looking Back Through the Lens Of God’s Sovereignty”
These were my summary thoughts:
- Because God is sovereign, no prayer that was prayed was ever wasted
- Because God is sovereign, no truth that was shared was ever ineffective
- Because God is sovereign, no ruler (man,govt or law) that came, went or stayed was ever a sole product of human will
- Because God is sovereign, no natural disaster that happened was totally natural
- Because God is sovereign, no pain that was felt was ever pointless
- Because God is sovereign, no act that was evil was senseless
- Because God is sovereign, no life that was taken was unexpected
- Because God is sovereign, no door that was closed was ever a dead end
- Because God is sovereign, no prodigal that has walked is ever unreachable
- Because God is sovereign, no progress that was made in our faith was a cause for self-promotion
Following in pattern from last year, tomorrow I’m looking forward to looking back through the lens of God’s sovereignty. The message will be:
“Life, As It Happens, Within The Providence Of God”
For the glory of God and the good of His people.