I just took down the old calendar and put up the new. It's always a poignant moment for me, because I've made it a family tradition to decorate our calendar with family photos from the year past. I make them online and give them to my family for Christmas gifts. Changing the calendar on Dec. 31 feels like a chapter in life closing, just as a new one opens wide.
It's been an amazing year for me, writing-wise. I took a book idea from start to finish in about eight months--a new record for me. I also attended three fabulous conferences: the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference, the Oregon Christian Writers Summer Conference and the American Christian Fiction Writers Annual Conference.
At church during the Christmas season, we often sing a Chris Tomlin version of the traditional "Magnificat" (Mary's song) called My Soul Magnifies the Lord. The words always ring in my heart for days afterward.
"My soul, my soul, magnifies the Lord. My soul magnifies the Lord. He has done great things for me, great things for me..."That's what New Year's means to me--remembering the blessings God has bestowed in the past year and looking forward, in anticipation, to the year ahead. In Joshua 3:5 (NIV), Joshua says to the Israelite people, "Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you."
I don't mean to take the verse out of context, but I think it's safe to say that the Lord is still doing amazing things among His people, even to this day. He answers prayers (Psalm 17:6), He heals the broken-hearted (Psalm 34:18), He guides and disciplines us (Psalm 94:12), He keeps His promises (Psalm 145:13; Hebrews 10:23) and He has PLANS for us (Jeremiah 29:11).
The New Year is bound to have good and bad, joy mixed with sorrow. But we can trust that God will be with us every step of the way and with the turn of each calendar page--and He will be doing amazing things among us.
Blessings to you in this precious New Year!
Ephesians 3:20-21. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.