Once again, a new year is right around the corner! Can you believe it?? 2016 is coming to a close with the dawning of 2017. As with last year at this time, I have a word stirring in my heart for the new year to come: AWAKEN. And I believe it’s a word for 2017 for me, and you too if you want to share it.
At year’s end I love to reflect on the closing year, the good, the bad, the mundane, the monumental. It’s all worth pondering and pausing over. The pondering usually stirs a longing in my soul; the longing turns to looking. And I look into God’s loving gaze and hope to see, to hear, to learn what He has to say about the passing year and discover what He wants to speak over the birth of the New Year.
Remember with me the word I heard for 2016, literally one word for that year: INTERRUPT. This one word evolved into a prayer that has resounded over this past year.
In this year’s ending, I hear a new word. A strong word. A word that calls for action. Soooo much has happened in 2016 personally, in the church as a whole, in our nation as a whole. I wonder if you are suffering from something I too am seeing I need to overcome.
The past few weeks have led me to wonder and worry over the state of my emotions and spiritual condition. I have felt as if I have been sleep-walking or at the very best going through my days with that early morning grogginess that lingers way too long into the afternoon. I HATE that feeling of being there, but not there. It feels as if I am simply doing the basics, going through the motions, unattached and uninvolved in my world, but knowing I am still a part of the activity around me.
Vague, slumbery-sleep-walker, zoned out, numb….I hope I am not the only one feeling this way lately. Then again, I know I am not alone because I have had several conversations with people I know who describe nearly the same feelings I have had. Two words….IT STINKS!!!
And it’s time it ended!! I DON’T want to enter 2017 in a zombied-out state of existence.
AWAKEN…..God’s firmly spoken, loudly but lovingly, uttered word.
Do you hear it too? Will you decide with me to enter 2017 with eyes fully open, hearts completely engaged, spirits and minds alert and ready to follow Him into the new year?
My prayer for this year, for 2017:
Awaken my soul to Your goodness and glory. Awaken my heart to the reality of Your love.
Awaken my eyes to the beauty that surrounds me. Awaken my spirit to the wonders of Your grace.
Awaken my mind to the resounding truth of Your words of life.
Awaken my body from the numbness of “too much” for “too long.”
Awaken my senses to the blaring needs of others around me.
Awaken my self to YOU.
Yet better stated, read Isaiah 60:1-2 (AMP)
Arise from spiritual depression to a new life, shine [be radiant with the glory and brilliance of the Lord]; for your light has come, And the glory and brilliance of the Lord has risen upon you. “For in fact, darkness will cover the earth and deep darkness will cover the peoples; but the Lord will rise upon you and His glory and brilliance will be seen on you.
Eugene Peterson’s translation of these verses is equally powerful:
Get out of bed, Jerusalem!
Wake up. Put your face in the sunlight.
God’s bright glory has risen for you.
The whole earth is wrapped in darkness,
all people sunk in deep darkness,
But God rises on you,
his sunrise glory breaks over you.
Claim this word with me for your 2017! Pray that God would awaken you too to His wonders, love, truth, grace, and the great need of others. It’s time….no, it’s PAST time for me and you to WAKE UP and live life with eyes and hearts and souls wide open and alert!
HAPPY NEW YEAR
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