January is over and for those who made New Year’s resolution promises, trends show that 11% last less than a month in the UK (according to a survey by GoCompare) which is admittedly better than the USA where in 2023 43% of people quit keeping resolutions by the end of January (statistics from Ohio State University). Even world leaders have fallen short as they promised in 2015 to try to limit the long-term temperature rise to 1.5°C but this week it was reported that, for the first time, global warming exceeded that 1.5°C across an entire year, according to the EU’s climate service (bbc.co.uk/news).
Against this backdrop of failed human promises, God always keeps his word. John 3:16 tells us that one of these promises made and kept was the gift of eternal life through the offering of his son Jesus as a sacrifice: “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (NIV). Likewise, Jesus himself promised “I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am” (NIV, John 14:2). As hinted at by John 3:16’s “whoever believes”, people have to take a personal decision and their own promise to follow God to receive these blessings. “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (NIV, Mark 12:30; Deuteronomy 6:4).
“His [God’s] divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises… Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election… and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.”NIV, 2 Peter 1:3-11
Prayer Points for the Week:
- Pray for those receiving treatment for cancer in the UK, including the King.
- Pray for Pakistan in the aftermath of its contentious general election.
- Please pray for the situations in Ukraine and the Middle East. For peace; for aid to get through to those in need; for those mourning the loss of loved ones.