Praise the Lord! Once again we have come to the end of another year. It is time to recall, repent and renew our commitment to the Lord. Certainly, constant introspection may not be a healthy habit- just like driving a vehicle while focussing always on the rear view. Yet, an occasional review of our life is helpful. We can assess our life and think about ways to go forward more efficiently.
In fact any moment can be a time of retrospection. Similarly, any time can be an occasion for a new beginning. A year end is definitely the best opportunity to look back and consider the days gone by.
In the Old Testament God often called upon the people of Israel to look back. Isaiah 51:1 It was to:-
Remember the way God dealt with them. Due. 8: 2ff; 9:7, 8.
Be grateful to the Lord. Psa. 103:8
Be humble. Due. 8:16, 17
Be confident. Isa. 51:1,2.
Today also a sincere review of our past will lead us to the above mentioned experiences. We ought to recall the faithfulness of God and be thankful, humble and confident for the days ahead. Nevertheless I would like to consider another important reason to look back our past days. That is to examine our life. A thorough check-up of our past year’s performance is essential.
In connection with the Lord’s supper apostle Paul wrote to the Corinthians, “But let a man examine himself..” 1 Cori. 11:28a. Often we read this verse during the Holy Communion and leave there. However this self-examination is not just confined to Lord’s Supper. A Christian should constantly examine himself and see where his life stands in the light of God’s word.
But alas, we are only interested to examine others! We conveniently forget our own faults. To such ones the Lord says, “Hypocrite! First remove the speck from your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck form your brother’s eye.” Matt.7:5. It is not our business to judge the motive and intentions of others. The Lord will reveal it in His own time. 1 Cor. 4:5.
Obviously, a local assembly should examine the professing believers / apostles etc and take necessary steps. Revelation 2:2; 1John 4:1 Even this corrective measures in a local church can be effective only after the leadership have a practice of examining and correcting their own life first. Matt. 7:5
What are the areas we should look into?
Our heart. 1 Cori. 11:28 – Is our heart clean, in good terms with the Lord to appreciate Him and worship Him? What is our attitude to divine things?
Our faith. 2 Cori. 13:5. “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves…” How is our faith? Is it great, little or even lacking? How much do we depend upon the Lord?
Our work. Gala. 6:4 “But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing..” How is our activity? Is it in accordance with the scriptures? Is it acceptable to the Lord?
Our ways. Lama. 3:40 “Let us search out and examine our ways, and turn back to the Lord.” This has to do with our life style. How is our general life, the fashion, the style? Is it pleasing to God?
Paul says if we don’t check and yet consider that every thing is alright, when the truth is something else, we deceive ourselves. Galatians 6:3. Actually it is not just deception, it is foolishness. We are deliberately rejecting the opportunity to examine our life and amend abnormalities. We just pass our time with out any contemplation for God’s plan or standard.
Notice what Job says, “Though I were righteous, my own mouth would condemn me: though I were blames, it would prove perverse.” Job 9:20. Job knows that his own evaluation and judgment has limitations. He is aware that it is God who searches the hearts and the innermost part of our being. Jer. 17:10. The Lord knows exactly what we are. Then it is only wise to go to Him and allow Him to flash His light upon us and make us to see our real state. Jam.1:22—24.
That’s exactly what the Psalmist did, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; try me, and know my anxieties; and see if there is any wicked way in me...” Psa 139: 23, 24. Shall we also seek the Lord’s help and examine our entire life and alter our ways before too late. And then surrender afresh to God’s own hands for a better, blessed New Year.
TO ALL OUR ESTEEMED READERS, WE WISH YOU A VERY BLEESED AND CHRIST CENTERED HAPPY NEW YEAR 2010.