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December 31 – Time and eternity

He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end. – Ecclesiastes 3:11

Scripture reading: Ecclesiastes 3:1-15

At the end of another year, it is time to look back and look ahead. We want to do this with wisdom. Looking back, let us acknowledge thankfully that God has filled our hearts and lives and this world with beauty. There has been the beauty of the changing seasons, of majestic mountains and flowing rivers, of the love of family and friends, and of seeing God at work within us and among us. As the year ends, may God help us to banish dark thoughts, regrets and complaints. Instead confess the truth that,  “He has made everything beautiful in its time.”

Christians have the blessed hope of everlasting life in Christ. We are promised an eternity, which God has placed in our hearts, an eternity of fellowship with God forever! You can close the books on 2020 and look forward, not just to a year ahead, but to eternity in the blessed assurance that Jesus Christ is your Lord of life forever.

Time in the Lord’s care is beautiful. Eternity is secure and yet, there is a mystery to God’s plan. We cannot fully understand all of God’s ways, nor can we see into the future. Yet, this we know with confidence our sovereign God is working out His good and wise plan for our lives and at last we will have an eternity to praise and glorify Him for His great salvation! We end the year with thanks, with faith in God’s promises, with hope in His plan for us, now and for all time and eternity!

Suggestions for prayer

Pray that God will fill your heart with thankfulness for blessings received. Ask the Lord to reveal to you the beauty of His plan, His purpose and His world. Pray for faith to face the future with confidence.

Rev. Gregg V. Martin has pastored a total of five congregations in three Canadian provinces since he was ordained in 1977, and also served for more than seven years in Latin America as a missionary. This daily devotional is also available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional.


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