And So the Adventure Begins...
I hope all of you had a beautiful Christmas season! Time is flying and we are about to walk into a new DECADE. A whole new decade. I can barely believe it! Every new year is a world of possibility. There is something so amazing and magical about the energy that surrounds the promise of a fresh start. The chance to do things differently, forge a new path, be a better person. I think it’s pretty cool that the New Year comes right after Christmas. Jesus came to give us all of the things we hope and imagine the New Year will bring. I kind of picture those two holidays holding hands and being best friends. If you really get the meaning of the first, you’re so much more able to live out the second. (And keep your peace when plans or dreams veer off course a little).
Every year I pick a bible verse that is my theme! 2019 was Deuteronomy 31:8.
“God is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t worry.”(MSG)
November 2016-June 2018 was filled with anguish. We lost vital pillars in our lives to illnesses after watching them battle for over 5 years. I gave birth to our youngest in April of 2017 then struggled heavily with postpartum anxiety for over a year. We changed ministry roles at our church. It was major life change after major life change and I felt like I couldn’t keep up. Now, on the other side, so much of that time is a blur. I honestly couldn’t tell you what my life verses were for any of those years without pulling out old journals and looking. All I knew was that 2019 was going to be a year without fear and anxiety ruling my life. That verse kept creeping in right when I needed it and gave me so much peace over those years. GOD IS STRIDING AHEAD OF ME! I love how The Message puts it like that. Like God is a warrior taking the lead, fighting my battles. I don’t have to have one thought of worry! It’s so powerful. Gods word is so life giving, I encourage you to add digging a little deeper in His word on your 2020 resolution list! This year was not totally perfect, but it brought so much more peace than the few before it.
I wanted to share with you what God has laid on my heart for this upcoming New Year. We are blessed to be a part of an AMAZING church staff and one thing we do every year that I am so grateful for is our Pastoral Staff retreat. The theme of that weekend for me ended up being “Healthy”. I left feeling a burning desire to have a healthier marriage, and family, a healthier life physically, emotionally, and spiritually. God wants that for us. We don’t have to live a sick, chaotic life even when it seems like that is all that surrounds us. We don’t have to be led by our circumstances. As I’ve been praying in the weeks since our retreat I keep coming back to John 10:10.
A thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.
I believe that God wasn’t necessarily talking about abundance in terms of lots of material things, although He can and does bless His children that way. No, I believe He was talking about peace and strength physically and mentally. True joy in our hearts no matter what life throws at us. Peace in the dark times, and a grateful heart at all times. Walking in the abundance that is only achievable when we are filled with and led by His spirit.
This year, I don’t have a long list of resolutions just this: To be healthy in all areas of my life. To lean on God better and let His abundance flow in my life.