There are a lot of things I love about this time of year…a dim lit room illuminated only with the lights of a Christmas tree, the music on the radio, spending time with family and friends, the baking, the celebration of our one true savior and just the spirit that Christmas brings all around. As well, there are things that aren’t as lovely…the crowded malls, the increased traffic and the stress of a never-ending to do list. But as Christmas approaches I love to sit and reflect. Being intentional to stop and remember the year that is coming to a close helps me to appreciate what I’ve experienced and refocus for the future.
This last year has held some great victories, major changes, a lot of joy and a lot of loss. Family members and friends have passed from this earth to eternity and things we thought were a staple in our lives are no longer there. The journey of this past year has been unlike anything we have ever experienced but through it all we have grown, both closer to the Lord and closer as a family.
As I sit typing this thinking back over the last 11 months, I’m reminded that things and situations are ever changing…but God, He remains. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. His plans for us are great and His ways are not to be understood. I’m thankful this year has been full of twists and turns, it’s caused us to cling to God like never before, intently listening to His voice for direction. It’s caused us to hold our plans and timeline very loosely in order to grab ahold of His. It’s taught me I still have a lot to learn about trust, forgiveness, contentment. love and patience as opportunities to practice them all have come barreling before us this past year.
Most of all I’m reminded of the God I serve and the sacrifice of His only son…the simplicity of Jesus and His entrance into this world, His humble beginnings, His ordinary life that He lived as a carpenter and His obedience to His father’s will. His love for each of us poured out on a cross, His body wounded so that we could be made whole…He was fully God and fully man…the only perfect one. I’m so thankful for Jesus and salvation. I’m thankful for His forgiveness, His grace and mercy that I get so freely yet do not deserve.
As Christmas draws near, take some time to remember this past year. Thank God for what He has brought you through and praise Him for where He is taking you. Every event this last year held was an opportunity for growth and preparation for where He is taking you. He is moving heaven and earth to position you for what He has for you…thank Him for the journey as this year comes to a close and another begins. I pray you and your family have a very Merry Christmas and that you feel and experience the love of Christ like never before. May this Christmas be the BEST you’ve ever had!!
Luke 2:9-11, “An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.”