It’s interesting to read old musings… I wrote this on the 30th of December, 2000.
As we rush towards the end of this amazing year, are we ready for the next year to amaze us? The word ‘amazing’ is mostly reserved for good things, but it’s also appropriate for this year’s dramas. How many of us ever expected such horrors? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could use ‘amazing’ for good things in 2021?
I’ve listened to several end-of-year speeches by world leaders. The ones I enjoyed the most were spoken from their hearts. Important matters: what was significant for them in their own lives, and what they believed would benefit those they cared about: their people, their nation, and the world. Their faith in God.
The pandemic still affects our lives, and has left its mark on the hearts of those who suffered loss this year. I pray they’ll find more joy, love, and peace in the future. Most of us desire the same blessings – for others, and ourselves – and the speeches I heard echo them. While I can’t see inside the hearts of these leaders; I hope they’re not merely mouthing platitudes.
In my search for messages online, I unexpectedly found an old 1941 recording of President Roosevelt and Winston Churchill, who were together on Christmas Eve in America, each giving a speech to encourage the peoples of the world to keep on fighting in their conflict against the forces of evil. Churchill particularly urged his American friends to make sure they gave their children a happy time that night before their country raced back to the war after briefly remembering the One who’d been born to bring them eternal peace.
After that, I watched Queen Elizabeth of Great Britain encouraging her people to turn to the Light of the world for hope in their fight against the pandemic. She said that Jesus had meant so much to her during her life.
I also listened to our Australian Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, urging us to follow this scripture verse: ‘And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up’ – Galatians 6:9 (ESV).
Then I thought about the original Christmas speech by the angel who spoke those thrilling words to the shepherds. ‘Today your Saviour, Christ the Lord, was born in David’s City!’ – Luke 2:11 (God’s Word Translation)
No television, internet, movie or video there, but a special bright star in the sky and a company of angels praising God because of this baby’s birth. The shepherds heeded the angel’s words; some wise men followed the star, and they all found him in Bethlehem. The time for this child’s own important speech was many years away in the future. He gave it quietly, at night, to a Jewish teacher, but it’s been recorded and repeated; probably the most recited words in the Bible.
Jesus said, ‘For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish, but have eternal life’ – John 3: 16 (NASB).
People might forget the messages of the Queen, the Prime Minister, and others who speak of their personal faith in these perilous times, but Jesus’ words are still there in the Bible. He too spoke of his faith – faith in his Father’s love. He sent out his words to anyone who will respond to them.
Now, as I re-read what I’d written, I wonder about 2021. Is the world any closer to believing what Jesus said? This pandemic may continue for years, but Jesus’ words will never pass away. Amazing!