Zechariah 12:1-13:9 ~ Revelation 19:1-21 ~ Psalm 147:1-20 ~ Proverbs 31:1-7
Today is the 28th day of December. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I’m Brian. It is great to be here with you today, just one of the few days left. We’ve ground this year down to the nub. It is almost finished. It is like a good pencil that you’ve loved and it is almost gone or a delicious cup of coffee that you’ve drained to the dregs or, I don’t know, we could go on and on with the analogies, but it is true. We’re down to the last few days, so may we appreciate these days. Rather than just looking into the new year, may we go, ‘wow, these are the last moments of opening my heart to the scriptures for this year’ and enjoy this time that we have together in the year 2016.
So we’re reading from The Voice translation this week and so we have four days left in this year and two of them will be spent in the book of Zechariah that we’ve been reading for the last week and then two of them in the final book of the Bible, the book of Malachi. So today, Zechariah chapter 12 verse 1 through 13 verse 9 today.
We’re getting down to the end of the year which invariably means that we have probably begun to think about what the next year is going to look like. It is this space between Christmas and New Year’s that the whole world gets reflective. We’re looking back at all of the things that have happened in the year and there are all these news programs taking us back through all of the things that we’ve forgotten that happened in the world. We’re also looking back in our own lives at the things that we would like to change. So this is the time we’re like, ‘January 1st, that’s it. I’m going to the gym. January 1st, that’s it. I’m going to eat salad. January 1st, that’s it. I’m going to carve out space for this or that or I’m going to let that go or I’m not going to struggle with that anymore. I’m going to actually put myself into this.’ We do this every year and it is kind of a natural rhythm and flow, but the book of Psalms today gives us something really powerful to contemplate as we do this sort of contemplation. The psalmist says,
But the Eternal does take pleasure in those who worship him, those who invest hope in his unfailing love.
That language is sort of powerful because when we think about hope, we think about finding ways to hold onto it, not ways to invest it. Hope is something we try to store up and protect. It is kind of like the rainy day thing, like we’ll always have hope and we always will need hope, so it is something we try to treasure and hold onto and not necessarily something we are sowing into. Yet the psalmist is saying,
The Lord takes pleasure in those who worship him and invest hope in his unfailing love.
So as we’re in this little transition between the end of the year and the new year and considering all the things we might be led to change or that we want to be different in the next year, may we consider investing hope in the unfailing love of God. Imagine the dividends that will pay out in our lives in the coming year. Imagine the bedrock that becomes, that we have invested our hope in God’s unfailing love, that that is really where our hope is paying off, that his love endures forever, that it is unfailing for us. Imagine that. That we finally realize his love toward us cannot, will not, would never fail. He would never withdraw it from us. He is willing to be intrusive with it, disruptive with it, pervasive with it. He is fathering us and if we invest our hope in his unfailing love, oh, we are not only setting ourselves up for quite a stable year out in front of us, but we are also bringing pleasure to our Father.
Father, we take this deeply to heart because yes, hope is the thread and it is the one thing we cannot live without. When we have become hopeless it is such a horrible, horrible thing. So we hold onto the treasure of hope, of having hope. You are inviting us to invest that hope in your unfailing love which will only produce more and more hope. So come Holy Spirit. Again we ask that you plant this deep in our lives at the level of our identity, transforming us, changing who we are, sanctifying us, continuing to pull us forward into your divine nature where we see and operate in this life as we were made to do. Come Jesus. Come Jesus. We need you in this because this feels weighty and very important to what comes next for us in the coming year. Come Holy Spirit, teach us how to invest our hope in your unfailing love. We ask this in your precious name, amen.
Www.DailyAudioBible.com is the website. It’s home base. It’s where you find out what is going on around here and there is always something going on around here. Most of what is going on around here is a lot of work behind the scenes getting ready for the new year. But the More Gathering for Women that we’ve talked about here the last couple of weeks, the advanced pricing for that is still available through the end of the year, so I’ll just mention that briefly.
If you want to partner with the Daily Audio Bible in the year 2016, then of course I thank you. Of course I’m humbled and we all are, that we get to do this, that we get to serve each other in this way. It is humbling every day that we get to do this together. It is amazing.
So if Daily Audio Bible has been a life-giving source for you, then invest in the lives of those who are not here yet but are on a collision course right now because they are doing exactly what we were just talking about, considering life and all of its dysfunction and the things that need to change in the coming year. This brings tens of thousands of people searching inside of their spirituality, finding that it is lacking desperately, that it is gasping. And then Google searches start happening and Facebook posts start happening and Instagram posts start happening and the conversation begins to happen and invariably people who belong here find this place that they didn’t even know existed, this global campfire known as the Daily Audio Bible. They will be here and they are coming now, people that belong in this community, at least for the next year, to travel along with each other as a community as we all do each and every year.
So if you want to partner with the Daily Audio Bible in keeping that a daily rhythm of life in the new year, then thank you. There is a link on the home page. If you use the app, you can push the More button in the lower right-hand corner or the mailing address is P.O. Box 1996, Spring Hill, TN 37174.
And, as always, if you have a prayer request or comment, (877) 942-4253 is the number to dial.
And that is it for today. I’m Brian. I love you. I will be waiting for you here tomorrow.
Community Prayer Requests and Praise Reports
Hello, my name is Angie and I’m a first-time caller. This will be my first year completing the Bible. I’m calling for a bit of an emergency prayer request that my sister-in-law, she is not being given much time left. Her liver and kidneys are failing due to her drinking a lot of alcohol. She is down to like only functioning 2%. If you could please pray for her. Her name is Brittany. Thank you.
Hello brothers and sisters from the Daily Audio Bible. This is Sam, Washed in the Blood of the Lamb from Perth, Western Australia. Today’s date is the 21st of December and I basically just want to pray today for vindication for those that have ever been wronged, done wrong by, so I want to pray. Lord Jesus, Father God, I come before you right now into your throne room of grace, into your Holy of Holies, Lord God. I pray right now that you would vindicate those that have ever been wronged, my Lord God, by false words, by malice, by any type of backbiting, by any hatred, my Lord God, whether it be in workplaces, whether it by friends or family, my Lord God. I pray that you would vindicate them and bring them and restore them, my Lord God, unto the glory that is deserved unto them, my Lord Jesus. So I’m praying and I ask that my saints join along with this, Lord. I also just want to say thank you to each and every one of you that prayed for souls in Rockingham. Three people gave their lives during our Carols by Candlelight concert on the 18th of December just past, so thank you very much for all those that did pray with us because souls saved is another person going to heaven or, you know, people rededicating, so I thank you all and I just praise you all. I say thank you to you all for praying with me. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.
Good morning Dabbers. I’m a burning bush that will not be devoured to the glory of our God and King. And I’m just calling to say Happy New Year, but also to pray. This is not my Christmas message. Don’t worry. I already called that in. I love you guys. I have not called in as often. Before I pray, I just want to praise God. I drove to Georgia to see my family, my husband and aunt who is in hospice and got all the way back to Charlotte before my car broke down and I just couldn’t help but think what would have happened had my car broken down on the road coming where I knew no one to come and help me? So God is so good. And I got it fixed, so praise the Lord. I’m just rambling. But Father God, we thank you for this family. I thank you for all the members, the listeners, the callers. Lord, I praise you for Brian and his family. Lord, I pray many blessings upon them going into the new year, God. Father Lord, we just place all our cares before you because we know you care for us. We trust that you are faithful and just, not only to forgive our sins, O Lord, but that you are a faithful God, you are faithful, Lord, to see your plans through to fruition. We love you. We love you, God. In Jesus’ name, amen. I love you all and talk to you soon, hopefully more in 2017.
Hi, this is Beloved by the Beach. Today is Wednesday, December 21st and I’m in my kitchen putting together some Christmas cookie dough, listening to the Community Prayers from the week of the 17th and I just wanted to call for Pastor Gene. Sister, it’s heartbreaking to hear you cry. You’re such a strong woman of God and we all love hearing you encourage us and we love to hear your testimony and I just wanted to encourage you. You are going through this trial. You’re suffering and you’re in pain and you’re still on the air encouraging us through it. Do you see what a thing of beauty that is? I’m sitting back and I’m watching God’s masterpiece and I’m so sorry for your pain and I’m so sorry for your suffering, but know that we’re all praying with you and that we’re all there with you. We’re all part of his family and we love you so very much. I’m praying for resolution for you and for peace and for comfort for you. God bless you, sister.
Hi family. This is Sally from Massachusetts. Please, please pray with me. Heavenly Father, I lift up every single person that is listening to the Daily Audio Bible. Father God, we come together as a community to grow closer to you, to learn more about you and to invite you into our lives. Father God, you know about our illnesses, our weaknesses, our addictions, marriages, parental relationships, health problems, financial problems, those of us that need jobs, those of us who are lonely and hurting, and those of us who praise you, Lord, for your blessings. Father God, we come here to this community because we believe in the power of prayer. Father God, you know every single one of us. You know the hairs numbered on our heads. We praise you, Lord, for this community. We praise you, Lord, for the love we feel for the people all across the earth that we have never met but we are sisters and brothers in Christ. Thank you, God, for your blessings. In Jesus’ precious name we pray, amen.
Hi, this is Tish. I’m calling from the Seattle area. This is my second time calling. I’m a second-year listener, a first-time attender of the More Gathering. I know they’ve been advertising for that, and there are nothing but wonderful things to say. If you get the opportunity, do go. And this is where the Lord gave me a new name, faithful, so when I do call I’ll be saying Tish, Faithful that the Lord has Named Me. I was calling today because I just wanted to lift up Bonnie’s son. Today is December 21st and he had his court hearing and I’ve been praying for him since this morning. Dear Heavenly Father, we just thank you. Touch the hearts and the minds of all who make the decisions in the courtroom. We ask that you see him in the light that God sees him. Restore favor and mercy upon him and that things will work out in his favor. Lord, I want to pray for all the children of the world, Dear Lord, that are lost unto worldly things and peer pressure, dealing with drug addiction, prostitution, homelessness or in jail or prison involving criminal activity. Dear Lord, we just thank you for them, Dear Lord, right now. __________ instill the love and the comfort and peace of the Lord and return to him, to have a desire and to have a relationship with him, Dear Lord. We just thank you. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.