Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "For Thy Mercy And Thy Grace"1 (Lyrics)
Psalm 34:8 – Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him. (NIV)
When I was pastoring, at the end of the old year, God always gave me a Bible verse — or a thought that lined up with Scripture — that I could use to base my preaching on for the coming year. I would write out the verse or thought and then my goal would be to see if each Sunday's message lined up with the year's focus, according to what God had placed upon my mind and in my heart.
Since leaving the pastorate, I have discovered that every year, as the old one comes to an end, God still gives me a verse or thought for the new year. I always write it out and tape it to a windowsill in my kitchen where I have my baking and work station. This way, not a day goes by that I do not see and read it multiple times. Throughout the year, I am always amazed at how those words are exactly what I need to keep me on track with God's will and ways as I struggle with issues, have decisions that I need to make, or am in need of encouragement.
The thought for 2022 came from a book that I was reading. As soon as I read those words, I knew immediately that they were to be my focus for this past year: Trust and know that the Lord is good.
Googling these words, the Scripture closest to them was today's verse, where instead of "trust", the word "taste" is found. To taste something if we have never tasted it before is always a bit of a risk. We may or may not like it. But the only way to find out is to take that risk. We usually do so, based on the experience of others whom we trust, who have already tasted and found it good.
Tasting and trusting God are similar. They involve risk. But the more that we choose to trust God by remembering previous experiences of trusting Him or by seeing the evidence of it in the lives of other Christians, the more that we are able to taste and know His goodness and His love, His presence and His wisdom, and all the other wondrous things that make Him Who He is. Tasting and trusting go together. The more that we trust God, the more that we partake of Him. The more that we partake of Him through Scripture, prayer, fellowship, and embracing the beauty of His revelation through nature, the more that we trust Him.
Once again, I plan to choose a verse for the coming year. How about you? As this new year unfolds, though I do not know what it shall bring, I do know that as I choose to trust God, the more that I will know Him, which is a goal that I believe is truly worth pursuing.
Prayer: Father, thank You that the more that we step out in faith to trust You, the more that we are able to taste or experience how awesome that You really are. Help us each to taste and know that You are good in each and every circumstance of our lives, that our trust in Your faithfulness may abound, no matter what may come our way. In Christ's name, we pray. Amen.
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Thanks, Lynne, for the good advice. Have a Happy New Year.
Optimistic and encouraging words to remember for 2023, thanks and Happy New Year Lynne!
Thank you for sharing this encouraging devotional with us. Blessings in this upcoming year! Blessings.
Thank you for sharing. It’s just like our faithful Lord to give you a yearly scripture. Keep writing your thoughts.
Thanks Lynne. Lovely verse. What would we do without The Word?
Never knew you were a pastor! Bless your heart.
Love your words this morning ! Thank you and all the best for a blessed 2023
Thanks, Lynne, for once more giving us another of your encouraging devotionals, always look forward to them. May you and your family have a peaceful, happy New Year. Blessings.
Thanks, Lynne, for your words today. I found a good verse from my reading this morning and wrote it in my journal. I’m not sure I want it for the whole year! It wasn’t what I imagined as my goal for the year.
What a beautiful parallel you have drawn with the concepts of ‘trust’ and ‘taste.’
I enjoyed the devotion.
What a wonderful way to get your year started and use God’s blessings to keep you there while moving forward in the new year. Thanks for sharing.
Dear Lynne: Thank you for the lovely idea of posting a verse at the beginning of the year to carry you through. I do enjoy your devotionals very much. Wishing you and yours many blessings in 2023.
Numbers 6: 22-23. A blessing for today and tomorrow. The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious unto you. The Lord lift ups his countenance upon you and give you peace.
This is a great idea! I too have verses taped to cupboard doors, but I’ve never had a yearly focus. Thanks. What a wonderful thought to complete the old year. Happy New Year!
Dear Lynne, greetings!
Just wanted to thank you for all of your Devotionals during 2022 and to wish you a healthy, happy, and blessed 2023.
First of all, Lynne, Happy New Year and best wishes for you and those you love to have a wonderful year ahead. It sounds like you will not lack for activity!
Your remark about leaving the “pastorate” interested me. You have lived an interesting life…and grandmothering may be the best job.
Thank you, Lynne. What a wonderful way to keep on track for the coming year.
Perhaps you wouldn’t mind sharing where you were in a pastorate? The LORD is certainly using you in the ministry of writing. Keep inspiring us, please.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Good morning, Lynn,
In 1957, our first child was born and did not live. I did not know what to read. I let the Bible fall open where it would and it was Psalm 46, “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in (times) of trouble”. It has been my mental go to verse ever since, and during these difficult days, my wife has Alzheimer’s, I think about it often, almost daily.
Thank you for your good words this morning and I wish you and yours a very happy New Year.
Greetings Lynne and many thanks for another of your very special devotionals. What a great idea to choose a scripture and place the words in a spot where you will review them each day of the new year. Our Lord certainly has given us many very meaningful words to take to heart and follow their meaning each day. You have chosen a special way to do this for sure. Blessings for sharing this idea and many blessings as you continue to write devotionals in the coming times. May the new year 2023 be filled with healthy joyous times for you.
It’s a long way from the French West Indies to Atlin, but we always feel we’re right there with you as we read your devotionals
Whether we’re in ON in the summer, or down here in our winter home, you always touch us, and we’ve often told you as much.
We thank you for your continuing ministry.
God bless you and your family.
Happy New Year Lynne or maybe more correctly a Blessed Holy Name of Our Lord day, when celebrate his receiving officially his name.
I was delighted to read how the Lord gave you a thought which led to a verse which became the focus of your ministry for the year.
Over the years the Lord has guided me in ways to ponder and reflect on what He wanted to do in my life and through me not only in my Church but in the wider community where I served in many ways.
May the Lord continue to guide us day by day as we serve him in various ways.
Good morning, Lynne,
This is a good idea, and I am going to listen to see the message God thinks I need for 2023 and put it where I wash the dishes each day. It is similar to the idea a few days ago of not boxing up Baby Jesus and to leave Him somewhere where you will see it as a reminder to stay focused on why Jesus was born on Earth.
The hymn that was chosen to go with your devotional is a good reminder of God’s love and comfort.
I believe that quite a few readers will take up “The Goal” and benefit from it. HAPPY NEW YEAR and trust in the Lord. Blessings.
Thank you, Lynne, for this excellent recommendation.