Standing at the Portal

Today is the last day of the year.  Well, duh, you already knew that.

But when did you last think about that versatile word last? It seems like a mostly-sad word, as in the last day of our Christmas together time (we just got back from the airport goodbyes.) or the last of the Mohicans (the tragic story I happen to be reading because last week we hiked into the waterfall where the movie was filmed and then I found the book in a free little library.) 

So last is a sad word.

But at the same time, it has a positive side, as in the last day of school or the last chemo treatment. 

Sometimes it gives me a grateful I’m glad that’s over. And sometimes the word makes me want to remember the things behind it and celebrate. 

And so today, this last day of 2021, I want to remember and celebrate. 

In my devotional book I read about a hymn written in 1871 by Francis Havergal. As a New Year’s prayer, I share her simple and true words with you. 

Standing at the portal of the opening year, words of comfort meet us, hushing every fear.

Spoken through the silence by our Father’s voice, tender, strong and faithful, making us rejoice.

“I the LORD am with you. Do not be afraid. I will help and strengthen, do not be dismayed!

For I will uphold you with My own right hand; you are called and chosen in my sight to stand.”

For the year before us, O what rich supplies, for the poor and needy, living streams shall rise.

For the sad and sinful shall His grace abound, for the faint and feeble perfect strength be found.

He will never fail us, He will not forsake; His eternal covenant He will never break.

Resting on His promise, what have we to fear?  God is all-sufficient for the coming year.


I pray this for all of us, the poor and needy, the sad and sinful, the faint and feeble, standing here at the portal of the opening year, that this year we will grow stronger in hearing and believing God’s words of comfort.  

Happy New Year!

(It makes me happy that this is my last blog post. See you next year!)

5 thoughts on “Standing at the Portal

  1. Sarah, thanks for sharing your sweet and meaningful thoughts. It’s nice to be thevibber to what you think in your private moments. I love you, my friend, Dianne


  2. This reminds me of ! Sam 7:12. “Thus far has He helped us.” I love this! I know He will not forsake & will continue to help us in the new year. Happy New Year, dear friend.


  3. I was wondering if you read the devotion today!
    Marvelous story.. wasn’t it?
    And your blog.. marvelous story!
    Thankful for all you’ve shared with us this year!
    Keep it up!
    See you next year!


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