When we step into a New Year, we face the unknown. Who could have predicted the devastation in Haiti? Who knew that a loved one would be diagnosed with cancer, that a baby would be lost in childbirth, that a spouse would abandon a relationship for good. January is a month filled with potential, but it is also filled with new hurts and disappointments. 

This is the time we need assurance. We must reaffirm the truth that God has not abandoned us. No matter what this new year brings, there is someone greater than our struggle and He walks beside us each step of the way.

I love the story told by Ira Sankey about some British Soldiers fighting in Africa during the Boer Wars of the late 19th century. “When the soldiers going to the front were passing another body of soldiers whom they recognized, their greetings used to be, “Four-nine-four, boys; four-nine-four;’ and the salute would invariably be answered with ‘Six further on boys; six further on.’ The significance of this was that, in ‘Sacred Songs and Solos’ [a hymn book that had been sent to the front] number 494 was ‘God be with you until we meet again;’ and six further on than 494 was hymn number 500, ‘Blessed Assurance, Jesus is Mine.'”

Question: How can you be encouraged and encourage others in the midst of the battles you will face in 2010?

photo courtesy of azurehat.com