Praise is awaiting You, O God, in Zion; And to You the vow shall be performed. O You who hear prayer, To You all flesh will come. You crown the year with Your goodness, And Your paths drip with abundance. Psalm 65: 1-2, 11.
In Genesis chapter 1 and verse 14, God created time and he said in the b part of the verse what purpose it was to serve. First, to divide the day from the night. Second, for signs and seasons and for days and years. From this we can see that time (seconds, minutes, hours, days, months, and years) are not configured by God to be boundaries or limits to His works instead it is meant to help us identify milestones where we can pause to rest, consider, relish His wonders and reset for greater exploits.
Given the significance of the year-end to businesses and our economies at large. The world system has made it a rush time to push their inventories by encouraging people to buy and to give. This culture of increase in commerce activities aligned with the holidays is critical to satiate our consumer mindset. In this case, there can be only one winner-good merchant.
Also, each time we come to the end of a year, it is traditional for us to take a stock of our wins and losses in the ending year and take a look at the incoming year with a view to projecting possibilities of turning our losses to gains. Many times, we juxtapose the incoming year based on the events of the outgoing year or outgone years and sometimes feel jinxed to repeat the failures. The challenge here is man’s propensity to want to know or control the future and when we realize that we can’t, we relapse into fear. It is this fear of uncertainty that serves as the raw material for the devil and his agents to make us feel like he (the devil) has a special power to wreak more havoc at the end of the year hence the drive for special and lengthy prayers. Prayers however are not meant to be concentrated at a time. It is meant to be a lifestyle, not a special event. Jesus said that men ought to pray at all times (Luke 18:1).
God and the end of the year.
So, what does God do at the end of every year? A closer look at the main text, Psalm 65:11- He crowns the year with his goodness, will reveal that God crowns ‘the year’ and not ‘the end of the
year with His goodness. What this means is that at the end of the year, God will continue to do what He always does, He will visit us with His goodness, again.
In a nutshell, the only thing that changes at the end of the year is us and our environment. God is constant. He does not change. The scriptures say that Jesus Christ (God the Son) is the same yesterday and today and forever Hebrews 13:8.
Do not get me wrong, I am not in any way minimizing the significance of self-reflection, taking account, and looking forward (planning) for a greater year ahead. What I am admonishing is that, as the children of the most-high, we need to learn how to rest in Him regardless of the situation that is prevailing circumstances around us.
Some of His timeless promises.
You will not die untimely because the scripture says that Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. Hebrews 2:14-15
You will not lack any good thing because the scripture says that the young lions lack and suffer hunger; But those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing. Psalm 34:10
Your health will not fail because the scripture says that, Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers 3John 1:2; and said, “If you diligently heed the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the Lord who heals you.” Exodus 15:26
Your Goliath will not prevail because the scriptures say that Be shattered, O you peoples, and be broken in pieces! Give ear, all you from far countries. Gird yourselves, but be broken in pieces; Gird yourselves, but be broken in pieces. Take counsel together, but it will come to nothing; Speak the word, but it will not stand, For God is with us.” Isaiah 8:9-10
You will not remain where you are because the scripture says that The Lord our God spoke to us in Horeb, saying: ‘You have dwelt long enough at this mountain. Turn and take your journey, and go to the mountains of the Amorites, to all the neighboring places in the plain, in the mountains and in the lowland, in the South and on the seacoast, to the land of the Canaanites and to Lebanon, as far as the great river, the River Euphrates. See, I have set the land before you; go in and possess the land which the Lord swore to your fathers—to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob—to give to them and their descendants after them.’ Deuteronomy 1:6-8
You will not lack Guidance because the scripture says that Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it, “Whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left. Isaiah 30:21
He will fight all your battles for you because the scripture says that And he said, “Listen, all you of Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, King Jehoshaphat! Thus says the Lord to you: ‘Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s. Tomorrow go down against them. They will surely come up by the Ascent of Ziz, and you will find them at the end of the brook before the Wilderness of Jeruel. You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem!’ Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you.” 2 Chronicles 15-17
Let’s praise Him
These promises and many more are available to us every day of the year. We can therefore lift our holy hands in worship of the king of kings and the Lord of Lords because He will continue to crown our year with His goodness. Every day, every month or year, His goodness will not depart from us.
As we continue to rest in Him, let’s turn these promises into prayers during this season and beyond.
Rotimi A. Owoade
I WILL HEAL YOUR LAND
If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14
One of our God’s desires is for us to live in good health – beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers. 3 John 3:2. Therefore, each time His people are afflicted, He was not only concerned, He always did something and fast too. In the same way, as the whole world is groaning under the burden of a global pandemic, we can rest in the assurance that God is aware, He has a plan and He is working His plans out. We may not see or feel it, I can tell you that His plan is as real as our breath. We, therefore, need not despair or fret, God has an answer and we are part of it.
Like the Bronze Serpent
Then they journeyed from Mount Hor by the Way of the Red Sea, to go around the land of Edom; and the soul of the people became very discouraged on the way. And the people spoke against God and against Moses: “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the wilderness? For there is no food and no water, and our soul loathes this worthless bread.” So the Lord sent fiery serpents among the people, and they bit the people; and many of the people of Israel died.
Therefore, the people came to Moses, and said, “We have sinned, for we have spoken against the Lord and against you; pray to the Lord that He take away the serpents from us.” So Moses prayed for the people.
Then the Lord said to Moses, “Make a fiery serpent, and set it on a pole; and it shall be that everyone who is bitten, when he looks at it, shall live.” So Moses made a bronze serpent, and put it on a pole; and so it was, if a serpent had bitten anyone, when he looked at the bronze serpent, he lived. Numbers 21:4-9
The passage above demonstrates how God works in almost every situation. He makes provision; plays His part and He expects us to play our part. As can be seen, the whole problem started because people spoke against God and Moses and the consequence of this action was fiery serpents among the people which brings about the death of many. This flow is typical. Devil and his agents always need an open door for them to strike. He always needs a helping hand to make an inroad. He is as powerful as much as we help or allow him. The good news is, however bad our situation is, God will not abandon us. Even in a terrible, self-inflicted situation, God still made a way of escape. This is why our confidence can not be shaken in this situation of the global pandemic. We know that our help is near. God will speedily work out His plan for His world and stop this virus in Jesus’ name.
According to 2 Chronicles 7:14, healing of land begins with the healing of the heart and it all starts with humility. In response to God’s anger against His people, they, in humility came to Moses and said “we have sinned”. Its humility that unlocks the door of God’s mercy and not self-justification. I have heard the question many times that if God is good why will He allow people to suffer? The truth is, God doesn’t allow people to suffer for no reason. Many times, we choose to. However, when we come to Him in repentance, He will respond to us as He did to His people by giving Moses instructions on what to do. Its important to note that, after the bronze serpent was raised, victims of serpent bite must look up for themselves. Nobody will do that for anyone.
Our Role as Believers
In the first year of his reign I, Daniel, understood by the books the number of the years specified by the word of the Lord through Jeremiah the prophet, that He would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem.
Then I set my face toward the Lord God to make request by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth, and ashes. And I prayed to the Lord my God, and made confession, and said, “O Lord, great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and mercy with those who love Him, and with those who keep His commandments we have sinned and committed iniquity, we have done wickedly and rebelled, even by departing from Your precepts and Your judgments. Daniel 9:2-5
Daniel in the passage above was not part of the sinning but he owned the sins on behalf of the people because he was biologically one of them; the same reason why Jesus was qualified to die for us (Hebrews 2:14). God responded to him. We too can pray Daniel chapter 9’s prayer on behalf of our world and move the hand of the Lord for the land. As we commit ourselves to prayers, the Lord will not only rid our land of the physical pandemic, He will rid our heart of the spiritual pandemic in Jesus’ name.
The Bible says in the book of Jeremiah 1:10 that, see, I have this day set you over the nations and over the kingdoms. To root out and to pull down. O destroy and to throw down. To build and to plant. In other words, only what we allow to stay, stays. In light of this, it is important that we enter the realm of the authority that God has given us and overrule all the activities of the enemy.
In conclusion, through the prayer of intercession, we believers have the ability to reverse the course of any evil here on earth. We can stop the hand of the devil and bring down the kingdom of God. We may not be part of the sins physically but we can repent on behalf of our world and help bring healing to our land. God is expecting us to stand up and work with Him in this regard.
…and said, “If you diligently heed the voice of the Lord your God and do what is right in His sight, give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians. For I am the Lord who heals you.” Exodus 15:26
Jehovah Rapha, we worship you. We thank you, Lord, for your love and mercy that guarantees our healing. Thank you for the commandments you gave to guide us. Thank you for the blood of Jesus that atones for our sins. Thank you for your promise not to put diseases on us. We thank you because when we come to you, you will by no means cast us away. We bow before you in worship today. Accept our praises In Jesus’ name.
See, I have this day set you over the nations and over the kingdoms, To root out and to pull down, To destroy and to throw down, To build and to plant.” Jeremiah 1:10
Father, we stand in the authority we have as your children and speak against the power behind this pandemic and pronounce your judgment against it. By your power, we pull down every stronghold of CORONA virus and we declare that by your mercy our lands are healed. According to your word, we root out, pull down, destroy and throw down every disease in Jesus’ name.
But to you who fear My name The Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings; And you shall go out and grow fat like stall-fed calves. Malachi 4:2
Father, we ask that you arise with healing in wings and heal our land. Heal every nation. Heal our economies. We ask for your hedge of protection around all our health professionals. Preserve them, Lord. We ask for inspiration for solutions speedily in Jesus’ name. Lord, we ask that as the water cover the sea, let your righteousness cover our land in Jesus’ name.
And the Lord turned a very strong west wind, which took the locusts away and blew them into the Red Sea. There remained not one locust in all the territory of Egypt Exodus 10:19
Father, we ask that you let your east wing sweep through the land and blow Coronavirus into the sea and never to return in Jesus’ name. We ask that you heal every sick and stop the spread of the virus in Jesus’ name.