Hopeful Horizons

Hooray! 2020 is done. I can’t wait to get on with my life. Like really, the worst year ever. In our own ways, we all excitedly approach the new year. Hope is finally on the horizon. 2021! Somehow all our problems will be solved. 

Okay… yes, I want next year to be better. I’m believing for a better year. I have dreams, adventures, and plans, but if this year has taught me anything, it is to be grateful. I’m thankful for you. For the lessons we’ve learned, the time we’ve shared, and that you’re still here. How much time do we have left? I honestly don’t know, but I’m gonna enjoy every second that remains if only a day.

I used to be a dreamer. Well, okay, I’m still very much of a dreamer. I’m always seeking what’s on the other end of the rainbow. I want to sail to that point where the sea meets the sky. Yet often, my yearning to be anywhere and everywhere but here has kept me from the most precious gift I’ve ever received. Now. 

Tomorrow may come. I sure hope it does, but for all I know, five minutes from now the sky could fall. Seriously! We’ve had enough things happen this year that we’d believe Chicken Little if he tweeted it. Yet, we now also know that impossibilities can be possible. With that we can be sure God works miracles.

Breath in. How does it feel? You’re alive, you’re here! But you don’t know for how long, so make every day, moment, and breath count. As if it’s your last. I haven’t been very good at that. And I’m still far from where I need to be, but we’ve been blessed with astounding lives, don’t miss them. 

It seems as though God has been showing me that it is good to dream. In fact, he created our imaginations, but there needs to be a balance. Oh, that word makes me cringe. (Mostly because I’m not good at balancing different aspects of my life) The good news? God is so perfect at balance, that he is willing to help us. When I surrender different areas of my life to him, he takes them and evens them out. No taksies backsies though. Trust me, it doesn’t go well. I’ve tried that many times this year and I’m not nearly as good at figuring out life as God is.

You see, I would get so carried away in my hopes and dreams for tomorrow or next year that I missed all the precious moments. Not that I never miss moments, but hey, we’re all a work in progress. Life is beautiful and yes, HARD, but after this year, I’m all the more convinced that God holds true to his promise in Romans 8:28. He works ALL things together for good. Not that all things are good, but he twists even the bad things to make something beautiful. Kind of like how all roses have thorns.

So please, as you enter the new year this weekend and reflect on the past, don’t miss all the roses among the thorns. As you continue to hug your loved ones a little closer, remember it took a pandemic to help you recognize your true passions and priorities. No, it wasn’t fun and I wouldn’t like to endure another year like that, but if it means watching miracles unfold and people love a little more it’d be worth it. This time I’ll let Jesus lead.

It’s Dead, Again

It’s 8 am and you’re just on time to get to work even a little early. Upon opening the car door, you see to your dismay the seat belt jammed between the door so that the battery drained. Was that just me? I’m sure at least one other person has done that. It’s so irritating. No way to fix it especially if the battery’s old and dead beyond resuscitation at least not before work. 

Thankfully, I was able to borrow my friend’s car to get to work, now slightly late, but do you ever wonder how a machine so big and powerful can be stopped with the slightest problem. When more energy is drawn than is received, it won’t start unless you connect it to a greater power source. 

How often do we pour more energy than we have into things? Even if they’re little, the distractions will get you. If you leave the door open, even a crack, how can you expect the motor to start in the morning? What are you investing your energy in? 

In my car, if I turn it on, the alternator charges the battery, restoring the power lost to start the car and continuing to power my radio, lights, and so much more. If I turn on the radio and leave it on, the battery will die. Even if the radio is playing a  great station, it will still run out of juice. If the car is on, the alternator will recharge the battery. Both need to work together to provide these comforts. 

It reminds me of how our faith walk should be. You see, we can minister to others, serve, give, and work our good morals out day and night, but if we aren’t connected to Jesus, we’re going to run out of “juice”. God is love, when we disconnect ourselves from it by making wrong choices or simply not spending time with him, we’re bound to run out of charge. We can’t give love, we aren’t able to receive from the father. 

Sometimes it’s really bad and we need a “heart transplant” in order to recharge and that comes from God alone. Thankfully, he doesn’t charge one hundred thirty-six dollars for the new heart. It was incredibly expensive to him, but he paid the bill too high for us. Now we can have life with our heart transplant through his free gift. 

He’ll give us a jump start any time and is the alternator to our battery.  All he requires of us is faith. Believe in the Lord Jesus my friend and you will be saved. You may get burnt out, your connection might get loose and you’ll definitely need a couple jump starts, but he is always there for you, just believe.

1 John 4:8-9 (ESV)

8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.

Exodus 15:2 (ESV)

The Lord is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him. 

Psalm 73:26 (ESV)

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.