The New Year


Happy New Year!

It’s arrived with a clean, new slate and a fresh, new start or has it? Isn’t it so easy to drag the chains that bound the past across the finish line and carry heavy stuff to a new beginning? We do that don’t we? Just because we do, and, ~ just because we can’t turn it off. Our minds work way long into the sleepless nights with stuff that won’t shut down and minds that won’t wear out, and anxieties that won’t let go, and old habits that won’t shake off and so you and I and we and us, we just run this ‘living race’ with so much baggage tied around our ankles.

Sometimes in the deafening silences of those dark hours, with so much noise in our heads, God whispers words into our hearts about how He’s got it all and the worry is so useless and so unnecessary, yet we can’t wrap our heads around a ‘No Worry” or a “No Fear” mentality.

Paul penned from imprisonment in Rome, such a good word of encouragement to his dear friend Timothy, whom he called his son,

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7.

Paul was passing the torch to Timothy as his successor and he knew there would be opposition. He knew It wouldn’t be easy to fan the flame and carry on in his absence. So he encouraged with God’s truth.

Yeah, we can be beaten and weary at the end of an old year, and about to enter a new one overtaken by fear and worry without stamina, motivation or courage. We too must face opposition but we must face it in God’s strength and courage alone. We too, must pick up the torch and carry on through the hard things that will come and as Paul wrote to the church in Philippi, something that he knew to be certain of he writes to us today. He focused, not on the problems or the prison that held him, but he saw his goal in this big rat race of life. It wasn’t about him but about winning the prize of God’s heavenly calling.

Beautiful soul, the beginning of a new year brings us that much closer to the prize. Let’s be challenged to stay the course and fight the good fight of faith, forgetting what’s behind and pressing on past the start line once again. Obedience to our Sovereign God is mandatory and the key to winning this demanding race. It won’t be easy, but it will be victorious and it will be worth it! Amen?


“Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have laid hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize of God’s heavenly calling in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 3:14

#AfterAdvent#NewYear#Twelvedaysof Christmas 

Packing Up Christmas


So what do we do in the silences now, after the Christmas scurry is hushed? It’s been different this year, so crazy, different and it might not seem like it was Christmas at all. It could have been so ‘over-the-top’ busy with schedules, shopping, programs, plans, preparation, cooking, caring, baking, bringing, wrapping, and decorating that we hardly had time to breathe, let alone take it all in. Ahh, but it probably wasn’t that way at all. It was most likely a more hushed season, spent alone without family or friends, questioning, wondering and waiting in the shadows of what’s to come. No matter what it was it’s come and gone!

So now it’s over and done for another year. Now it’s time to put Christmas back into the boxes of tradition for safekeeping. Yeah, we’ll do that ~ all of us, some sooner than later, but it will all get packed up once more and stuffed into boxes, closets and attics, garages and spare rooms. We’ll clear the clutter and some kind of ‘Normal’ for us will surface once again. Yeah, we will, we’ll put Christmas away but, let’s take care to not pack it away too tightly ~ out of sight, out of mind. Before we pack breakables into boxes and stuff boxes into corners, let’s tuck Christmas away into our ‘daily’ world through warm memories of a Christmas past; the Christmas of all the years we’ve had to spend with those near and dear to us without the threat of COVID’s icy fingers nipping at our heels. Let’s wrap those memories up snugly and tuck them into our hearts for some of the rainy, snowy days that are sure to lie ahead.

Those days when “alone” creeps in and the sun doesn’t shine and the head hurts, the heart hurts, and the soul aches and difficulties are very much there, glaring into our faces. Ahh, the memories of a sweet Christmas past, the reason for our celebration with family and friends and that Saviour of the world whose birth we celebrate all need to be packed fondly into our souls with extra special care because they’re so fragile, so breakable, and we are all so needy for the love they represent. So cherish the treasure of Christmas past! Cherish the warmth and the love that lives on because you choose to hold it in your heart forever and ever and it makes no difference that no one is there! It doesn’t matter then, that not one soul is around, because you’ve made a choice to hold that joy that was, close, and now on a rainy day, it’s still there in the hushed silences of the Christmas scurry when Christmas is over and put away. Yeah, when Christmas is over, and the new year begins, Our Saviour still reigns with a love that still lives on! Still loves, still cares, still protects and still brings Hope even in “Alone.” Nothing can change that. Not anything! Not ever!

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”Romans 8: 38-3″Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Deuteronomy 31:6