Thursday, December 30, 2021

Ponder Anew

Ponder anew. It’s one of my favorite lines in one of my favorite hymns. And as we head into a new year, I can’t get it out of my head.

Ponder anew what the Almighty can do.

We are on the edge of a new year. And we wonder what it holds. These last two years have been challenging, to say the least, and currently we see no sign that life as we knew it before Covid will ever be like that again. Even as we want to feel hopeful about a new year, we find ourselves frustrated or fearful or anxious. Life as we once knew it has changed.

But not everything has changed. God has not changed. And as we head into this new year, we would do well to focus on that. To ponder anew.

What does that mean, exactly? defines the word ponder this way: to consider something thoroughly and deeply. 

Let’s apply that definition to the line from the hymn. It would then read this way: consider, think about, deeply and often, what the Almighty can do.

As we prepare for a new year, as we are decluttering and making plans, as we are making our resolutions and writing new bucket lists, we would do well to set aside some time for pondering. As we anticipate what may come in 2022, let’s focus on what The Almighty can do.

And before we get too bogged down in our own plans and too frustrated about what didn’t work out exactly as we might have hoped, let us also pause to ponder what The Almighty has done.

Taking some time to ponder will put us on the right path to 2022.

Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of Creation!
O my soul praise Him, for He is thy health and salvation!
All ye who hear, now to His temple draw near.
Praise Him in glad adoration. 

Praise to the Lord, Who over all things so wondrously reigneth,
Shelters thee under His wings, yea, so gently sustaineth!
Hast thou not seen how thy desires ever have been
Granted in what He ordaineth?

Praise to the Lord, Who doth prosper thy work and defend thee;
Surely His goodness and mercy here daily attend thee.
Ponder anew what the Almighty can do,
If with His love He befriend thee.

Praise to the Lord, O let all that is in me adore Him!
All that hath life and breath, come now with praises before Him.
Let the Amen sound from His people again,
Gladly for aye we adoreHim.

(-Joachim Neander)

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