We are only into the first week of the New Year, and regardless of what you might think of the Mayan Calendar prophecy or the fiscal cliff decision or even the possibility of another war we all know that life (even at its best) is a risky business.

‘For you do not   know what a day (or a Year) will bring forth.”

I was reading recently of some of the famous celebrities who passed away in 2012; some of whose lives I followed quite closely; To mention only a few; Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, and Neil Armstrong; singers Andy Williams and Whitney Houston; legal expert Robert Bork; Rev Chuck Colson and evangelist R.W. Schambach; in sports Carmen Basilio and Hector Macho Camacho; in television, Mike Wallace & Dick Clark; in politics, Yitzchak Shamir (seventh Prime Minister of Israel)  & George McGovern; in motivational speakers Zig Ziglar & Stephen Covey. There are many others but these are the ones who  quickly come to mind and remind me of that biblical adage;…What is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time, and then vanishes away.”

According to the best figures I can find, approximately 155,000 people in this world die every day. Breaking that down, that’s about 6,500 individuals every hour, or 107 per minute. Each click that you hear represents the death of some individual.

Some of the people who died in 2012 were educated, somewhere not. Some were city folk and and some  some lived in abject poverty.  In contrast, some  were wealthy and had their every whim satisfied, and some never had a full stomach or a drink of clean water in their life. Some never had a day of illness; some never had a day of health. Some were winners and some were losers. Some were peace makers and some were soldiers trained for war. Some made others glad when they entered a room and some made others glad when they left. Some laughed a lot and some cried a lot.  But regardless,  at each tick of the clock a soul left us and moved from time into eternity. Did they have a warning of their coming death or did death come swiftly and unannounced?  Some will be mourned and missed and some will be hated and hissed. And some things are not for us to know. But one thing we do know and that is that they are not with us any longer. The lesson to be learned is that one day the last tick of the clock will be for you, and be for me, because death comes to everybody.

That is why Isaiah the prophet said in Chapter 55: 6-7  “Seek the Lord while he may be found; call upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the Lord, that he may have compassion on him, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.”

We only get one chance to repent and receive eternal salvation and it is in this life, on this side of the grave.

We’re Not in Con trol.

So Let Me Ask A Few Questions To See If You Are In Control:

1. Are you sure, you will be alive tomorrow? If your answer is “Probably”, then you aren’t in control of your life..
2.What will you eventually die of? If you don’t know, you’re not in control of your life.
3. Are you in control of all circumstances of all that surrounds you? Can you control the weather, the way other people drive when you’re on the highway: than you’re not in control of your life.                                                  4. When you breathe your last, will you be headed for headed for heaven or for hell? Because you are not in control of your destiny you need the Savior because you aren’t in control.
God has always known you would need a Savior and that is why He sent His Son Jesus to die on the cross in your place. Confess your sins and Invite him into your heart right Now. He’s waiting for you to do so.

Circumstances Beyond Our Control

Did you know that most of us almost didn’t make it through 2012 and I’m not talking about the Mayan prophecy? This is the one you didn’t hear much about. On the night of December 12th, an asteroid, asteroid 4179 Toutatis, came within a whisper of smacking into earth. Scientists have calculated that if an asteroid slightly larger than one-half mile across were to hit earth it would have catastrophic consequences. This meteor was three miles wide.

Now, when I suggest that we had a close call with asteroid 4179 Toutatis, you should know that that hunk of rock was still 4.3 million miles away. Still, when astronomers are used to speaking in terms of light years, 4.3 million miles is almost right across the street.

The point is this: even though you may not know the danger you were in, the Lord did. Human astronomers first saw the asteroid in 1934, but the Lord had been watching it since it made its first orbit around the sun. He had known about asteroid 4179 Toutatis from its inception, and He has protected us from another unknown danger. In short, we, like the children of Israel, have been blessed by a pass-over.

Considering the number of things that can go wrong in our lives, I am sure this is not the first time He has had death pass over us, and I am equally sure it will not be the last time He will protect us.

We will never know how many times the Lord has kept us from being injured because an auto accident didn’t happen. We cannot guess how often He has kept our feet from stumbling and falling. We will always remain unaware of the multitude of viruses and bacteria that never were able to lay us low because He was keeping us safe.

Every new year the list of ‘what might have been’   can stretch from pole to pole.  The good news is that like Job; while we do not know what tomorrow holds we know who holds tomorrow. He blesses us from things seen and unseen, from circumstances that we have no control over.

Be not as confident as the lion shaking his mane or the horse rushing into battle for,  

This is what the Lord says:                                                                                

Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom                                                             or the strong man boast of his strength                                                               or the rich man boast of his riches,                                                                         but let him who boasts boast about this:                                                                 that he understands and knows me,                                                                         that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness,                                                           justice and righteousness on earth,                                                                     for in these I delight, “declares the Lord.”

A Blessed New Year To You!                                                                                       The Best Is Yet To Be For The Child of God.

Pastor Bryant