January 2

I hope that you enjoyed the Christmas weekend. We jealously heard about the White Christmas you had here, and from the pictures, and the snow that was still on the ground when we got home Wednesday, it looks to have been very beautiful. We enjoyed the time with our family, especially those two little grandsons. I hope you were also able to spend time with some of your loved ones.

We came back from Texas via the scenic route. Of course thousands of travelers had seen their flights canceled, but ours on Tuesday went right on as scheduled. We knew we were going to be close getting to our connecting flight in Chicago, but were a little encouraged when we actually landed a little early. And then the pilot says that we will be waiting for a gate, which may take a while. Which means we deplaned, went to the shuttle, got to the other gate, and saw that our plane had efficiently left close enough to on time that we missed it. And of course nothing else that night to Charlotte. So we stood in line with the other lost travelers and chatted with the representative about our alternatives, finally settling on the next direct flight we could get a ticket for, which was Wednesday afternoon. She gave us a voucher for a discounted hotel room for a night, and then said, “Oh, and these are first class. That’s all we had left.” So we walked to the hotel shuttle in the 15 degree weather, got on a standing-room-only van to the hotel, got a good night’s sleep, then suffered through our first class trip to Charlotte. Guess it wasn’t all that bad…

And now it’s New Year’s! We will take a look at a few psalms on Sunday that put words to our heart’s cries when we have sinned against the Lord and need His mercy and forgiveness. The songs of David in Psalms 51 and 32 are powerful expressions of a broken heart crying out to God for forgiveness and then promising faithfulness upon receiving it. 

What will it take for you to start 2011 with a clean slate? Because our God is merciful, no matter what has happened in previous years, or how far you’ve gone from Him in 2010, you can start fresh now. But it will take a response from you. It is the response of trusting faith. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.” (Psalm 51:17) It means, like the old hymn says, trusting and obeying. Will you do it?

Bill Allen

Dr. Bill Allen preached at South Fork from 2005 to 2015. He received a Bachelors degree in Bible from Oklahoma Christian in 1978, a Masters in Bible from Abilene Christian (ACU) in 1988, and a Doctor of Ministry from ACU in 1992. He now preaches at the West Erwin Church of Christ in Tyler, Texas.

Leave a Reply