As I have been trying to prepare my heart for the New Year or at least New Year’s Eve. My mind is a jumbled mess. My memories are filled with experiences. Thoughts of years past when we played board games, drank eggnog and tried to stay awake for the ball to drop, swirl through my mind.
When I was a little girl at twelve o’clock, our quiet little neighborhood turned loud for about 5 minutes of pots and pans banging and clanging along with any other noise you could imagine. I never forgot it.
As a mom of littles, New Years Eve was one more night of snack making and sleepover planning with sparkling grape juice on the side
But, two years ago was not a year of merry making. Oh, we tried! We made the snacks, planned the evening but my husband had, what we thought was a pretty rough stomach bug. As the clock approached midnight, his steps began to stumble and his words were a jumbled mess. My only thought was he must be dehydrated. He hadn’t been able to keep anything down for a few days so even though he didn’t want to go,we all piled in the car to head to the ER. His Dad and the kids and I.
An hour and a half later a doctor walked in with a very serious expression and the bottom dropped out of our world. Large mass in his head, not sure what, ambulance to another hospital. Over the next two weeks of doctors, medicines, waiting and a surgery, we heard the dreaded words. Its grade four glioblastoma and as I heard myself crying wondering how I could do this and how I could help my children do this, I felt our surgeon drop a kiss upon the top of my head.
It was confirmation of what was to come. More hard, more questions, more fighting the good fight in body and spirit, and along the way, kisses on my head from our loving Heavenly Father in a myriad of ways. It was one day at a time, sometimes one breath at a time, only able to focus on what was right in front of me and Jesus. He walked beside us , He carried us, He interceded for us, He lifted our heads up, He strengthened us and in the end He spoke peace over us and called Alan home. Almost 14 months after our wild ride began, it finally came to a stop. It felt like we landed in another world all together. Nothing around us looked the same anymore. Our only constant was Jesus.
So as I began to hear talk about “words” this month; What is your word for this year? What was your word for last year? I thought to myself, “ What a great idea! “ and then “ I just can’t Lord, I have no emotional energy to wrestle out what word you have for me this year.” And just like that He whispered, “HOPE!” Hope, is your word daughter, yesterday, today and tomorrow. I am teaching you hope and you in turn will write about hope to remind your brothers and sisters that hope is their word too.
There are other words that will follow, joy, peace, loved, fearless, trust, courage, being still. For the Father has given us all these things. That is what it’s really about isn’t it? It’s about remembering what the Father has promised us and renewing our minds to that truth. It is doing what He said to do, “ Whatever things are true, honorable, just, pure, lovely and commendable, think on these things.” Things like:
“I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper and not harm you to give you hope and a future. “(Jer. 29:11)
“Be still and know that I am God.”(Psalm 46:10)
“My peace I give unto you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” (John 14:27)
“Sorrow may last for a night but joy comes in the morning.” (Ps. 30:5)
“When I am afraid I put my trust in you. The Lord is the stronghold of my life.” (Ps. 27:1)
These are everlasting words that hem us in when we feel like the very fabric of our being is unraveling. They are balm to our wounded hearts and they are cool water to thirsty souls. So as we face this new year. May we remember even if we don’t know the “word” for our year. We know many words that God has for us. Not just for the year in general but, day by day and hour by hour. May we pause, renew our minds with his truth and then step forward in hope. That the words He speaks over us will come to pass because His word does not return void