Saturday, January 7, 2012

Reflecting on 2011

“There is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1

New Year’s seems to be a time for reflection and resolution. Beth Moore challenged her readers to spend time with the Lord reflecting on 2011 and then characterize it in three words. What an incredible challenge. I am a firm believer in that history has much to teach us if we but take the time to look and ponder on the events that occurred. One of the most important lessons that I have been able to take away from participating in such events is that while the season may not have been wonderful, God has always been good and faithful, extending grace beyond measure.

The three words I would use to characterize 2011 are blessed, challenging, and ordinary-extraordinary:

• Blessed: the birth of Faith Evelynn, being able to spend time with all the grandchildren in April and June along with their parents Sarah and Keith, seeing the love and happiness in that family; spending time with David and enjoying his gift of music; spending time (even though it was short) with my three brothers; spending time with my mother and mother-in-law; making it through two challenging parts of the doctorate program; a safe trip down and back to Dallas for residency; connecting with friends on Facebook; new books to read; connectivity to friends and family far and near through the internet; time with Chris; and our needs were always met. The list could go on and on, because the blessings were abundant;

• Challenging: a year of more month than money; work; schooling; family health issues; loneliness; questioning of the journey and all the cost involved; not living right near everyone; unmet expectations;

• Ordinary-extraordinary: life is what 2011 has been, filled with blessings and challenges, with ups and downs, with disappointments and wonderful surprises. And through it all God has been, is and will be (Hebrews 13:8). You see, while my life is ordinary, I have an extraordinary God who calls me His own and that makes even the usual, the mundane, the average, so much more.

How would you describe 2011? Was it extraordinary? You can make 2012 such a year by becoming a child of God. No, all your problems will not go away; yes, there may still be hard times, but you can experience a peace that underscores it all. Just confess to Him that you want such a year, that you want to be His (I John 1:9) and you too can know that ordinary is so much more. Praying this for you.

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