It’s a wrap. 365 days later, 2014 is done. Can I tell you how thankful I am for God’s mercy rained down on my family this year. If you had asked me in January how I was going to make it through to December, I probably would have had a good cry. (In fact, I think I actually did have a cry or two.). But, here I am in December, and we are in a much better, stronger place. Life hasn’t gotten much easier, but we have dug down deep into Him, and He is holding us fast.
I am so thankful that you have walked this journey with me. Your prayers, your e-mails, your love in the comments on this blog — every bit of it has encouraged my spirit deeply. I know that I haven’t been the best at responding this year, but I want you to know how much you mean to me. You have been Aaron and Hur holding up my arms in battle. Bless you.
As we close out this year, I wanted to share one post from each month that captures the spirit of this year for me. This is kind of a time capsule of 2014 for me. So, if you want to catch up or re-visit some of my story, here it is.
January : Hold Fast
May He tattoo these two words on my heart: Hold fast.
I know He specializes in stormy seas, and He won’t let me slip through His mighty fingers.
February: A Warrior Princess
My King fights for our redemption. As His Warrior Princess, I am equipped with formidable weapons to wage war and uphold the defenseless.
March: A Soul Set Free
I am a soul set free.
He has broken away chains of bondage.
April: Phoning it In
If I am not careful with my heart, delight will turn into a duty,
and duty could transform into drudgery.
and drudgery might pave the road to danger.
May: In a Pressure Cooker
…once the lid comes off and the steam is released, I am going to be softer to His touch.
I need to wait. I need to trust the process.
June : What Are You Wearing?
Sometimes, you don’t know how good something fits until you take a chance and wear it.
July : Eyes Wide Open
My Abba doesn’t drift off to sleep on the job. He is in tune with my every noise and movement. His eyes stay wide open every moment of my life.
August : Crossroads
The bridge looms ahead — to cross or to burn.
My feet on the road must yield and not turn.
September : Gloom and Doom
I don’t want to hide inside when it’s a little cloudy outside. Lord, help me to open up the windows and let the light in. Help me to walk forward with the wind at my back and eyes lifted firmly toward the heavens.
On a ship “hold fast” implies that rigging is tied securely. During inclement weather, sailors would actually wrap themselves in the lines to help maintain their grasp. Seamen often tattooed this phrase on their knuckles as a reminder. With this information in mind, I had to smile when I read Hebrews 4:14 in The Message:
Now that we know what we have—
Jesus, this great High Priest
with ready access to God—
let’s not let it slip through our fingers.
This sailor is securing herself to Her Savior.
November : Hit the Reset
One thing I do know is that God has provided a perfect “reset function” for my soul. Have you been mis-functioning lately? Confession will clear that right up and put a new zip in your spirit.
December : God Came Near
You see, I don’t worship a distant God. My life is surrendered to a Heavenly Father who took on flesh and dwelt among the broken. He came to seek and to save the outcast. He pursues and woos and remains present.
God Himself is with us.
This Advent, may I remember that God came near, and I must do the same.