A New Years Eve Like No Other

For me New Years Eve is normally a time mainly filled with hoping, dreaming, planning, and looking forward to things scheduled for the year ahead. This year, it was different. This year, it was a mainly time of reflecting, of processing, of looking at all that had happened, of happily waving goodbye to the year.

 

Was it because 2011 had been such a full, hard, challenging, life changing, faith defining year? Partly, I think so. Or was it because 2012 is like no other year I’ve ever entered? There are no dreams, no plans, no schedule. Partly, I think so. Or maybe, simply, it was just my mood on this New Years Eve.

 

As I gathered with friends to see the new year in, we took some time out to reflect, to look forward, and to allow God to be a part of the ending and the beginning of so much. A lady led us in the time, and we were told firstly to recall to memory the hard times 2011 had bought, the tough things, the things we really struggled with. A sly grin crept across my face “Where do I start?”, I thought, “There’s quite a bit to bring to memory!”.  A friend glanced at me across the room, and looked at me sympathetically, almost as if she knew what thoughts were going through my mind. Next we were asked to recall something, or many things, that happened in 2011 that were great, that were highlights. The smile quickly faded “God, there is no highlight” I went through month by month, and I saw small joys. “Ok, there have been some good times this year too” But I wasn’t satisfied “What’s my HIGHLIGHT, what’s been the best thing?” I looked at the big picture this time, “God that you bought me through, it’s been a miserable, grimy year, but you have been there, and you have bought me through to 2012”. Next we were asked to think about our hopes and dreams for 2012. My mind was quiet. Nothing. My heart responded, “God, all I want is to be closer to you, to know you more, to love you more. That is my only hope and dream.”.

 

2011, has, most definitely, been a tough, breaking, changing, defining, refining, year. As 2010 ended and 2011 began I slept in this same house. My plan, and assumption, was that I would be in this house today. God took me from that certainty, into uncertainty, into impossibility, and back to actuality. Here I am, after all that has been lived in 2011, in the same house, with many of the same people sleeping soundly close by. It has been one, crazy year, but it has been a year in which I can trace God’s faithful hand.

 

2012 is, indeed, a year like no other for me. I am entering a new year in a way I have never done before. No hopes, no dreams, no plans, no schedules, but the lack of plans, the lack of agenda has allowed me to focus on what is really important. To know and to love God. THAT is my agenda for 2012, to know Him more, and to love Him more.

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