Before I can even think about 2020, I have to get my head around what 2019 has meant to me.
I spent this morning leafing through hundreds of pages of handwritten 2019 journal entires with one purpose in mind: to remember. This year has been a milestone in my spiritual and personal life and I am particularly proud of the growth I have experienced this year.
It seems that many of us take this day to reflect back on the last year and look forward toward the next, partly with nostalgia and partly with excitement about the possibilities that exist for us. Many of us might even pray for and about the things we think we want or need to have for the next year; the goals and ambitions that light our fires. I certainly do, but today I wonder: Do we ever stop and wonder in awea at how he got us through it all while we were preoccupied with our business?
I thought I was going to be reflecting on what God did through me this year, but really, I’m realizing that this is only a small part of the story. Maybe even only an afterthought or a side-effect of what he has done.
And what is the the true measure of a year of our lives? Like really, what are we counting as a “successful year”? Gross income earned? Amount of books read? Miles traveled?
For me, I’m counting my success as a whole lot of unquantifiable grace.
If I died today I would not regret one thing because I know and He knows that I have done my best to obey and please him in my heart. He knows because he was in it the whole time helping me through it.
And now that I know where I’ve been I can turn toward the future. Into the unknown with a cloud of glory leading the way and more glory following behind me.
In 2019 He kept me going. My heart understands this better than my mind. Even now while I’m typing these words, worried about whether I can post this article on time and trying to find the words to put together for you all, He is literally sustaining my drive, passion, and pouring into me the words and sentiment he desires, all while simultaneously upholding the universe.
I can’t move swiftly past this fact. With each word and breath I take, our father is Good. Holy. Sustainer.
Last New Year’s Eve I chose one word to define my goals for the year. I even wrote it in my best script diagonally across the first page of my 2019 Moleskine planner to set the tone for the whole year: COMMITMENT. And each week I made great and imperfect strides toward that goal, determined never to give up on my commitment to lean into what it really means to pursue God and the calling to which he has drawn me (writing).
Now in 2020 I want to DEPEND on him and know what that really is like.
And so we go into the unknown with a cloud of glory leading the way and more glory following behind me.
Isn’t that how we should face every day?
We are forever traveling to our destinations, whether it is to Egypt or Babylon, or back to Jerusalem to rebuild. But the whole way we know that our ultimate destination is to be with our Good Father forever, even though we must spend a while in exile.
Lead them like a shepherd, and carry them in your arms forever.Psalm 28:9b
If my desire is DEPENDENCE, then God, you must also be made BIG. As much as I am weak and in need, you must be made all the more powerful in my life. After all, what is the point of being dependent on God if the God of my imagination is too small and boxed in to help?
Today is a new day and a new year for all of us. My prayer is that God would be made big and gloried above all else in our lives. Lord, fill us with awe and wonder at yourself, so that we may truly rest in your goodness and glory.
The voice of the Lord twists mighty oaks and strips the forests bare. In his Temple everyone shouts, “Glory!”xPsalm 29
- How did you see God word in 2019?
- What has God taught you about himself?
- What is your prayer for 2020?