New Year… Almost

On the first day of 2022, a Saturday morning, I took a walk at 10:00 am in shorts and a t-shirt, working up a bit of a sweat in the 73-degree weather. I tried to squeeze in some yard work but the expected rains drove me indoors. The next night, snow fell. I woke up yesterday morning to about three inches on the deck railing, though the roads were clear and the ground was patchy due to the previous day’s warmth.

Gotta love Tennessee. We have all the seasons, sometimes in the same week.

Anyway, this new year doesn’t quite feel like a new year to me… yet. The homeschooling journey I began in 2005 eventually led to a part-time teaching position at a private school, and so I still operate by school calendars. For me, the new year will begin in August, and with it a brand-new season of life.

That being said, January 2022 kicks off a semester of change for me. My baby is starting her final semester of high school. There is a possibility of a career change on the horizon for me. God has been up to so much, it’s almost too much to share.

Many of these changes will be reflected here. Keep checking back… You never know what you might find.

So I’m dusting off this underused space, and planning some changes. As I survey the cobwebbed corners, I find myself eager to get back.

Until then, please click the linked title to read the most recent offering for my church family: “Lifestyles of the Rested and Reliant.”

I hope to see you around soon!

Tuesday Prayer: Seasons

The earth is the LORD’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein,
(Psalms 24:1)

Awesome Creator, the earth is Yours and all it contains. From the vast expanse of the heavens which declare Your glory all the way to the tiniest details like the number of hairs on our heads, You are intimately acquainted with every bit. You have also made the world and its cycles, and You have provided the sun, moon, and stars to document the signs and seasons and days and years. All of it ultimately points to You, Lord, declaring Your glory and teaching us of Your ways.

Our lives, too, are governed by seasons. There are times of frantic activity and times of rest; seasons marked by trial and turmoil and seasons of utter peace and pure joy. As we grow in Christ and deepen our walk with You, the trials and the joys begin to overlap and become one because we begin to see how You use all of it – the good and the bad – to work together for the good of we who love You. Because of this, we can honestly rejoice in our suffering.

Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance,
(Romans 5:3)

Not only because of our trust in You to take what our enemy intends for evil and use it for good, but we can also rejoice because we do not serve a distant and impartial God. Instead, we serve a God who became a man and endured suffering as a man. You have suffered, and so we know that every moment of pain or trial is a glimpse into what You have already done for us.

So often, Lord, we turn things upside down, wondering why our amazing God would allow suffering in the world. A better understanding of You have us marvel at the wonder of a God who loves His creation so completely that He was willing to become a part of it, to suffer and die for it, so that by His priceless blood, all of creation might be redeemed.

When our life seasons bring times of darkness or hardship, remind us of Your love. Remind us that even the darkness is not dark to You, Lord, for nothing is hidden from Your light and nothing escapes Your notice. Nothing is wasted. No season is useless in the eternal economy of Your grace. Even our suffering and our blunders, even our scars and wounds are given purpose and meaning when surrendered to You.

If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.
(Psalms 139:11-12)

Because You are good, we can trust You even in the dark and lonely places for if we belong to You, we are never actually alone. You have promised never to leave us nor forsake us. Teach our hearts a greater trust, a more complete devotion, and an endless sense of awe at the wonder of You, the King of Glory. May our lives be lived for Your service and our days be committed to loving obedience to Your purposes, amen.