2014 is closing and I cant’ say that I’m sorry to see it go! Aside from my babies being year older, which always fills me with joy and breaks my heart just a little more each year, this past year has been one of the hardest I have ever experienced. I want to be clear: God has been GOOD through it all, He has sustained, protected, been merciful, and given direction through some pretty tough paths. He has been patient with me as I grieved the loss of my grandmother, and the loss of our life out West. When we moved back east, I knew it wouldn’t be easy, but I wasn’t prepared for how much I would miss the people of that small mountain town. I have GRIEVED. And no matter how much I’ve tried, there has just been no rushing that process. Father God, though, has been there every step of the way, comforting, encouraging and strengthening.
There’s been sickness, trials, testings and challenges in 2014, so again, I am not sad to see it go, but I am grateful for the lessons learned. I am grateful that we are back home with family, especially for the time that my younger children have been given with their grandpas. I’ve also come out of 2014 knowing what I don’t want: I don’t want to fall into old patterns, I don’t want to fall in line with the status quo. I don’t want relationships that are only surface deep. I don’t want to live a life that isn’t genuine. And I don’t want to settle for something that is less than God’s very best for me and my family. I definitely don’t want religion and the yoke of man laid upon me or my children.
This is leading me to seek God in 2015 for the things that I do want: I want to be extraordinary, I want to preserve my God-given uniqueness in a world that wants to label me. I want friendships that don’t feel fake, forced or works-based. I want sincerity and honesty to motivate everything I do. I want to reach for God’s best more than I ever have. I want quality over quantity. I want the reality of Christ and His Gospel to permeate my family’s life, not man’s idea of what makes a “good christian”.
For most of these things, I have no idea what they will look like in the natural. But I am seeking.
Right before Christmas, I was online searching for a quote that would sum up what I was sensing for the coming year, just looking for something that might put to words what needed to be said to people (& myself) for this season and I stumbled across this:
This is a line from the well-known Christmas hymn, O Holy Night. When I saw it, a quickening flashed through my spirit and I felt as if the Lord were saying to me, “It’s time for the weary to rejoice! It’s time for a THRILL of hope to fill them once again!” Romans 15:13 says, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” God wants us to ABOUND in hope! By all measures, this past year was ROUGH, and for many people! I have spoken with many people this past year that have had to face some really difficult situations, emotional hurts, failures, sickness, cross-country moves, deaths, financial troubles, and so much more…but God wants us to abound in hope! He wants to thrill us again with the joy and peace of His hope! That truly is something to rejoice over!
2015 is beginning with a message of hope, and I personally receive it!
Some things that I am going to do to align myself with this Hope is :
- I’m going to make sure that He is given preference every day by reading my bible first thing in the morning. –NOTHING supernatural happens in a Christian’s life without the planting of the Word of God first, we must learn to consistently and faithfully apply the Word in our lives if we are to expect supernatural results.
- I’m going to take the time to pray in the Spirit daily. –The bible is clear that when we pray in the Spirit, we improve ourselves (1Cor 14:4 AMP) Who doesn’t need improvement?! I sure do, and I plan to make praying in the Spirit a priority this year.
- I’m going to pay attention to my schedule more closely and make sure that my time is being spent on what really matters. — Fruitful Vine Woman is all about priorities, but even I have to fight distraction on a daily basis. Busywork, life’s worries, spreading ourselves thin, saying yes when we need to learn to say no so that we can give our best to those priorities… it is just as important to go before the Lord -in light of scripture- and ask what our priorities should be… –In 2015, my desire has only increased to make sure that my life counts, that my decisions reflect what is important.
If doing these things brings me closer to living out the hope He has meant for me, if saying no to distractions and unfruitful busyness gets me closer to Him– then I am all in! I have other goals for this coming year, there are other things I want to accomplish, but the above thoughts are my core for the year. I may be weary from 2014, but I’m going to do my part in 2015 to experience the thrill of His Hope and find my rejoicing once again!
Dear one, your heart is so very precious to Him, and He has hope and rejoicing for you too. No matter what you have been through this past year, no matter what you have seen or experienced in 2014, let God bring you a thrill of hope in 2015! Take some time this week to seek Him and ask Him how you can enter into that hope and rejoicing in the coming year. I pray for the thrill of Hope, regardless of any situation, to permeate your life and fill you with peace and joy. God Bless You and Happy 2015!