2020 has come and gone, a year that certainly brought new challenges for many of us. So, what will 2021 bring us? Is there a word from the Lord for this new year?
Before we go there, perhaps an initial thought on the prophetic gift itself. Prophecy is a mixture of foretelling and forthtelling, and although it is the former that exhibits the glamour, it is the latter that contains the substance.
Or to put it another way, it is of no use for us to know what is to come, if it does nothing to prepare us. I believe the heart of the prophetic witness is to proclaim what people already know at some level in their hearts, but often do not want to address.
With that in mind, before we go on to look at this year, let us cast an eye briefly on the year just past.
For anybody who did not sleep through the whole of 2020, it was hard to avoid the spectacle of the US Election. Most of what I would have to say on that is encapsulated in the post, Do not fret.
I also concluded that this election only served to widen the divisions in the U.S.A. Was there significant fraud? I do not know. On searching for the signal through the noise, the only thing that became clear to me is that it is essentially unknowable as things stand. The system seems to have been designed in such a way that it is very difficult or impossible to properly audit a vote.
There is nothing good to come when a basic standard of truth cannot be agreed, and where only thing that appears to really matter is whether our ‘side’ won.
Echoing my previous post, I can only reiterate: do not get so hung up on the outcome of the election of an earthly prince that the heavenly King becomes eclipsed in your mind.
Do not put your trust in princes,Psalm 146 v3-5
in human beings, who cannot save.
When their spirit departs, they return to the ground;
on that very day their plans come to nothing.
Blessed are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the Lord their God.
Here’s the thing – a prince may rule for a while and do good, or do evil. But the Lord plays a much longer game. If we were alive in King Josiah’s time, perhaps we would have celebrated the great good he did. We would have thought, at last, we have won! All the evil is being rolled back! But yet, 30 years later, what was already set in place in Judah continued. The outward form had been temporarily modified, the inward heart remained degenerate.
So it is now. That is a word, if you would hear it. The preparation for us is to be ready for a form of exile – for rejection and persecution from the societies in which we have been nestled, but also for the Christ-coloured thread of hope, redemption and revival that will weave its way through the cord of trouble.
Now, a reflection from the other side of the Atlantic. As I write, the U.K. is on the brink of completing Brexit. So many words have already been written on this, a subject that has also caused deep divisions. My take on it is inspired by the following:
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.Ephesians 6 v12
I would encourage you not to look at the politicians, the agencies, the media, the courts and treaties, but what lies behind them. I have no problem with the E.U. per se, but I discern the spirit behind that organisation is set up in opposition to God. For the U.K. to leave the E.U., after a massive struggle, is actually a sign of hope.
Not that the U.K. has it ‘made’, far from it! But we are now in a spiritual position that God can deal with us as a sovereign nation once more. All I can see at the moment is a potential for something good to come out of this, but the road to get there will not be gentle.
Lastly, the elephant in Room 2020 has to be Covid 19. I have already written about this extensively earlier in the year. I called for us to Wake up, and Understand the times. Maybe added some perspective on the question of Why? And all this set in context of a Mercy Judgment. There is nothing new under the sun here, this is a trouble we are all intimately acquainted with.
Now, the word for 2021? It did not change. I have written, and still believe – It is the twilight of the current age, and we bask in its fading gleams. Much that can be shaken, soon will be.
If you would like something more, I would see Covid as the first shaking of many in this twilight. More will come, until we can properly see the foundations upon which our lives have been built. A shaking not so much a judgment as a form of mercy if it allows us to see what we have been standing on all these years – sand, or solid Rock?
I only pray for grace for us to see it, and courage to take action to save our very lives. When the wind comes howling and the waves crash against us – to have the grace to look to Christ alone, He who can draw us out of the waters too deep for us, and set our feet on the very Rock of His presence. That grace, to reach out and take His hand, and trust in Him to make a way when there is no way.
It is not so important what will happen, or when, but where we individually and as communities are when it does. We are called to be Kingdom people.
Then I saw ‘a new heaven and a new earth,’ for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Look! God’s dwelling-place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death” or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.’Revelation 21 v1-7
He who was seated on the throne said, ‘I am making everything new!’ Then he said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.’
He said to me: ‘It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children.
We are the heralds of a new heaven and earth, we are sons and daughters of a great, redeeming and victorious King who even now is making all things new. We trust in what can’t yet be seen, because it is more real that what can be seen.
Do not be tied into this world, do not trust in wealth, in status, in health, in the plans of princes, the lies of media, or anything temporal to influence you as to what is truly important. Remember this world has already been overcome! Those who have married the spirit of this age will find themselves widows in the next. Do not be counted in their number!
So this is the key, the message for 2021. It is not about what will happen, but where you are and whose you are, when it does. Root your whole being in Christ alone. Put your hands in His every day. Then, in the times to come, you will not be shaken, because He is and always will be, Unshakeable!