This morning as I lay in bed listening to my alarm wake up song “I Can Only Imagine” I didn’t anticipate that this Sunday would be any different from others before it. I didn’t foresee that I would soon be moved to tears. After all…I’ve been looking forward to this year ending…and the promise and hope of a New Year. But God had a different plan.
This past year has been filled with trials and tribulation…disappointment and hurt…even anger and bitterness. Thankfully the Lord did not leave me there in a turbulent ocean where waves of emotion threatened to swamp me. Instead He never left me, nor forsook me. He walked with me each step and each day. In doing so…He brought a healing to my hurting heart.
Yet…I so look forward to this year ending. In so many respects it feels like it’s been the worst year of my life. So many areas of my life were touched. Very little of what I had esteemed and valued last year at this time remained. But God had a purpose and a plan…to refine and purify my life, heart, mind and soul. This refining process can be very painful…thus I want this year to be gone.
I so look forward to a fresh start in the New Year. Taking with me the wisdom from the painful lessons I’ve learned. But moving on…proceeding forward nonetheless. Decisions made…on necessary changes that will enable me to grow and improve.
Perhaps my heart was made tender after listening to Charles Stanley’s message “The Power of a Personal Relationship with God”. Or perhaps I had been thinking too much about this past year…but soon Pastor Bob Kraning’s message not only challenged me but beckoned me to choose.
Choose to live like Elijah when he was weary, spent and fearful…following his great spiritual victory. Wallowing in despair and ask the Lord to take my life. Or look expectantly to the Lord, my great God and Savior, for what He will do in my life in the coming year. I choose the later.
Joshua 3:5 is my scripture verse for 2007…my focus…my mission.
“Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the Lord will do amazing things among you.” – Joshua 3:5
What might my Lord do in my life? That I don’t know…but I do have desires, hopes, dreams and prayers. I want to be prepared for His leading in my life.
Following his message…Pastor Kraning invited whosoever desired to come forward as he prayed for us in the coming year. It was there on the steps, in the shadow of the cross before me that my tears flowed. Grateful for the arms of friendship that stood beside me. Grateful for the pure, unified voice of our congregation as we closed our service. Thankful to God that He will continue to work in my heart…and plant a seed of hope. A seed that will come to fruition in the coming New Year…2007 and beyond.
Lord’s blessings to each you…and I pray a wonderful New Year for you and your families as you seek Him and draw close to Him in the coming year.