Sunday, December 28, 2014

Looking Back into the New Year

I pray that everyone who reads this had a wonderful and blessed Christmas. I would love to hear from all of you as to your favorite Christmas moment.  Although there are so many to choose from, I think my favorite has to be singing "Silent Night, Holy Night" while just the candles are lit during our Candlelight Service on Christmas Eve.  There is something about that moment that I refer back to throughout the year.  Please feel free to leave your special moments in the comments section below.

As I thought about what to write today, the verses from above rang true to me, and I hope they will with you as well.  The New Year typically is full of New Year's resolutions.  Yes, those promises we make to ourselves, and sometimes to others, of all the things that we will do differently in 2015.  I have to share, there are many things that I would like to do differently in 2015.  Yet, today, I hope that we can look back as we enter the New Year.

Let's reflect on the first verse listed above, "The Lord bless you and keep you."  Please ponder with me over the 2014 year and think of all the blessings our Lord has bestowed upon you.  Many will say - nothing good has happened this year.  Yet, I challenge you.  Whether it be body, mind, or soul, I am sure there has been at least ONE blessing our Lord has given to you.  Yes, we may wake up with a few more aches and pains than in previous years, but we are still waking up each day - to make a difference in this world.  Yes, I know that there are many moments where my mind made the wrong choices during 2014, but there were other times where I made the right choices - Godly choices.  I also know that during the past year, my soul was guided more by MY doings than God's path for me.  Yet, there were times when I followed God's path - and the blessings were overflowing!!  I know the Lord blessed you this past year - please take the time to reflect on those blessings and give praise and glory to the One who provided for us.

Second verse, "The Lord make his face shine upon you and be gracious unto you."  Have you seen God's face this past year?  I have!!  I have seen His face in those that have been gracious enough to forgive my sins for doing wrong.  I have seen His face in those that I have prayed with.  I have seen His face in my husband, my children, and my mom.  I have seen it in smiles and tears.  His face has shone upon me and has graced my life on more than one occasion.  Yes, let's reflect again on the times when you have seen God's face in your life.  I am sure there has been at least one time when his face has shined upon you as well.

"The Lord lift his countenance upon you and give you peace."  Countenance = support!  Did the Lord support you this past year and provide you peace?  Was there one time when you felt washed over by the Holy Spirit and found that special peace?  Not just the "quiet" peace (yes, that is a special time as well), but the type of peace where even though life around you might be busy, you were able to breath, smile, and be in the moment of God's peace.  God's peace is available for the taking each and every day - it is US that need to stop and take the time to FEEL that peace.  Has God supported you in 2014?  Has He been there for you, helped you, lifted you up?  Those are wonderful moments where we know we are His children - when we know that God came to this earth, in a manger, and died on the cross, so that we might feel his support and peace.

My friends at Proverbs 31 taught me something that I love to use when I read a special verse.  Insert MY name into the verse and personalize it for ME - for that is how God intended the Bible to be read.  So the verses would read:
    The Lord bless me, Susan, and keep me.
    The Lord make his face shine upon me and be gracious unto me, his child Susan.
    The Lord lift his countenance upon me and GIVE ME PEACE.

This past year has been filled with God's blessings, no matter how difficult the year may have been.  So please, before the ball drops on New Year's Eve, take a few moments to look back and see the blessings God so richly provided to us in 2014 before taking the leap into 2015.  I pray the following for us:
   May our Lord provide for all our needs, body, mind and soul.  May He give us the peace that passes all understanding.  May we come closer to him and his word.  Let us give God the time he so wonderfully deserves and, in turn, may we give time to each other.  Here's to a 2015 that brings us closer to God, closer to family and friends, closer to strangers, closer to peace.  Amen


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Thank you for visiting my blog. I hope we can share how God's grace has been life changing and that SIMPLE FAITH, getting back to a life that is rooted in the basics, can truly set us free to achieve so much in our lives.