'Lord, I am willing
to receive what You give,
to lack what You withhold,
to relinquish what You take,
to suffer what You inflict,
to be what You require.'"
Every NEWS YEAR'S DAY for years, this prayer of Jerry Bridges has graced the opening page of my new journal ---maybe yours too. Only our sovereign God knows what will fill the blank pages that follow---our unknowns are not unknown to Him. I love these 29 simple but powerful words that speak of His will and our willingness.
Glancing in my rear view mirror at 2019, I see times you and I did experience His giving. . . withholding. . . taking. . . inflicting . . . and requiring.
We prayed each other through travels, illnesses, decisions ... through operations and opportunities, the hellos and goodbyes ...through project deadlines, relationships...losses, struggles, joys, triumphs, and so much more.
I look back again, and smile, at the funny, inspiring and hope-filled words of encouragement we shared ... at Bible studies, conferences, family times, and visits across a state line or a table ... fun memories of welcoming the newborns, applauding the graduates, cheering at musical performances, school events, and the birthing of a book. :) So grateful for family and friends who sprinkled love and laughter into our dailies.
And then, as I look back once more, it's with a heavy heart, recalling the gut-wrenching times, the diagnoses, the news of a loved one gone too soon, the prayers beside a hospital bed, the weeping together at a memorial service. For some of you the year brought hard things; for some, the brokenness and harsh realities continue. You remain on our hearts and in our prayers.We never give up on hope. <3
This time next year all the unknowns will be known, the blank pages filled to the brim. But for now, we can rest in these familiar words of promise: "We know not what our tomorrows hold, but we know Who holds our tomorrows." So, dear friends, Happy. New. Year!
Lam 3:21-23 <3 "This I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning. Great is your faithfulness."
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