Read 1 Kings 3:5-14.
New Year’s Eve has always been the ultimate day of reflection. It is a unique day in that we are at the precipice of a New Year, yet are given one last moment to reminisce about the past year.
Our 1 Kings passage is one such passage that balances a precious moment, a dream, in which the past, present, and future are considered together. When God tells Solomon, “Ask whatever you wish, and I will give it to you,” Solomon’s response begins with reflecting back on his father’s time as king.
Let’s take a moment to pause together. What knowledge and understanding have you been filled with over the past year?
Next, considering the past, Solomon makes the request, “Please give your servant a discerning mind.” Interestingly, the Hebrew word used for “discerning” comes from the root word, “to hear.”
Let’s pause once more here. What words have you heard during this Advent and Christmastide season that have made you stop and listen?
Finally, God expresses pleasure in Solomon’s request, and grants Solomon “wisdom and discernment.” Or, translated literally, “understanding and hearing” as Solomon becomes king.
Take a final moment to allow your reflections on 2020 and the words you have listened to during this season. Considering your past and your present, what is it that you would ask God as part of your understanding and hearing for 2021?
Holy One, open our hearts to hear the words of your servant, Solomon, and allow them to guide us as we pause in the in-between on this final day of 2020 and on the cusp of 2021. Amen.
Rev. Rachel Hébert