It is January. A time to make changes. A time to make "resolutions" or "goals". A time to begin using a new day-timer. A time to clean up Christmas stuff and get on with routine. Days are getting a little longer with each sunrise and sunset. Somehow the turning over into a new year just feels right. It just feels like a clean slate ... a fresh start... or a new chance to make changes. I don't know about you, but I actually "feel" more optimistic, more promise, more excitement!
I look ahead to this next year and wonder exactly what it will hold. As we were driving to Eastview yesterday morning, I was sharing with Alvin that I had such a strong peace about the year ahead, and a strong overwhelming sense of God's presence in my life. It feels like I am constantly sitting on the edge of my seat waiting to see what God is going to do!
Today I had the pleasure of sitting and talking with Kristin. She wanted to spend some time with me and to hear more about what God is doing in my life. Before she came, I was reading some stuff from the past, from some journal entries ... and I came across the entry from my journal 11 years ago! I read it out loud to Ashley. It was written by Betty Stam who had been a China Inland Missionary. This quote became my prayer to the Lord: “Lord, I give up all my own plans and purposes, all my own desires and hopes and accept Thy will for my life. I give myself, my time, my all, utterly to Thee, to be Thine forever. Fill me, and see me with Thy Holy Spirit. Use me as Thou wilt. Send me where Thou wilt. Work out Thy whole will in my life, at any cost, now and forever.”
Sometimes we say things, sometimes we think them to ourselves, and sometimes we write them, not understanding the seriousness of the words. Did I really mean this? At the time? For sure. In hindsight, I realize God really took me at my word (not sure He does that, but you get what I am trying to say) It made me realize what I HAD really said ... "work out thy whole will in my life, at any cost, now and forever." This part actually made me stop in my tracks when I read it today, and thought backwards over my life. Work out Thy whole will ... at any cost ... hmmmm.
So this year ahead, I have not yet committed myself to any resolutions. Believe me there SHOULD be a number of them to write down if I chose to! I do want to make some changes. Changes in my spiritual walk with Jesus (in my devotional life, in my QT with Him) Changes in my physical life (perhaps THIS will be the year I lose that darn weight that is affecting my life!) Changes ... all over, I can improve many things about me!! (lol) Is it all about the "term" that we use?? (resolutions? goals?) I don't want to do anything out of legalism ... but instead want to live all out for Jesus and do what brings the glory to Him. Lord give me strength.
The one things I do know that I want to do is fall more and more in love with Jesus! I want that love to be reflected in my love for my sweet man Alvin, and for my children: Josh and Leah, Ashley and Michael, and for my sweet grandchildren: our Jay in heaven with Jesus, our Sweet Everett who is just into the wonderful age we call the 2's, and for our little Sweet Grandbaby to come, being born by c-section in two weeks (January 17th!!)
O Lord, thank you for this new year. Thank you for the fresh start. Thank you for walking us through the past year(s). We give you the honor and the praise for all you have done and ask you to continue to give us the strength to be used of you. Change us Lord. Use us. Thank you for your blessings! I love you Jesus!! Amen.
My daughter took some pictures of Alvin and I - I especially love the one that says "blessed" ... this is how we feel! Take a look at her photography blog. She is talented with a camera!