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At the End of the Year  

There is something sobering about facing a new year.  For some, it’s the intimidation of the unknown. But I’m not referring to the slew of latent fears and unanswered questions of 2019:

  • Will I hang on to my job?
  • Will my cancer stay in remission?
  • Will our daughter return safely from her tour in Iraq?

No doubt those are huge questions.  But the sobriety I speak of comes only with a careful scan of the previous year.  Glance back upon the last twelve months and consider with me…

There were opportunities to build bridges into the lives of unsaved friends and neighbors.  Exactly how much bridge building did I do?   Or did I merely talk about what I hoped to do?

There were moments—lots of them—where I could have chosen to demonstrate selfless love to my mate. Did I seize those moments and quietly emulate Christ—or did I merely have good intentions?   Or worse, did I simply put myself first—again and again?

There were texts I could have chosen to send or calls I could have made  to encourage my son or daughter—and remind them how proud of them I really am—that I’m on their side, pulling for them, praying for them.  How many of those did I actually share? 

While I was privileged to support some missionaries, did I just give money?  Or did I give the better gift—intercessory prayer?

Did I listen to sermon after Sunday sermon (and secretly feel proud of my church attendance) or was I actually a doer of the Word?

If my Hulu, Netflix and YouTube usage for all of last year were shown in the same pie chart that included my service for Christ, would I be okay with what the data showed?

This past year, did I actually hide God’s Word in my heart—or merely agree that memorizing Scripture is something I should really make a priority?

Did I become more like Christ—or just hope that it would happen?

Sorry if I sound like a drizzling rain on your New Year’s parade.  Don’t mean to.  But I think there’s a place for warning ourselves at the start of the coming new year, lest the lullaby of good intentions send us off to sleep and we become satisfied with dreams of kingdom living that are never attempted, let alone. attained. May God wake us all—every one of us—so we live the new year fully alive for Him!

“LORD, make me to know my end And what is the extent of my days; Let me know how transient I am.”              -- Psalms 39:4

 

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Jon GaugerJon Gauger

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Jon Gauger Media 2016