Here in the beginning of a New Year, I like to plod through a few thoughts and pause enough to give some mental and spiritual nods at the passing of a year…a beginning and an end. That pause took place on New Years’ morning while kids and kids’ friends slumbered away after a night of “partying”.
Usually I like to mark my pause a little more seriously but fever (mine), travel (my husband), and school breaks (one day only) conspired and I found myself sneaking in a moment on New Years’ Day. I noticed a few things in my review of 2013, the root lines God grew deeper this year.
Farewell: Flipping back and forth to my review of the year 2012, I noticed a theme of farewells in 2012. It bit a little because today I bid farewell to another family with even more farewells on the docket later this spring. Farewell was a theme for 2012, 2013, and will be a theme for 2014. Hmm. Not a theme I enjoy but a very present theme in life overseas.
Provision: I shed a few tears that morning as I listed some disappointments and remembered some painful turns in our path this fall. That tearfulness stayed with me a for a few days. In fact, it’s still with me now.
But what brings me to tears is not so much the disappointments as that I was never alone. And, I saw that I was not unprepared for the journey the Lord prepared for us. Lots of little provisions and preparations flooded my memory. That brought tears to my eyes.
Fellowship: When I hear this word, a picture flashes through my mind of cheap coffee in Styrofoam cups in the midst of a din of talking. Growing up, the main gathering place at the church was the “Fellowship Hall”. But that is a cheap and incomplete image of fellowship, I know. It makes me smile and give thanks for my roots.
No, the fellowship I’m talking of is more of the Fellowship of the Rings type of fellowship. I only half slept through the movie so I won’t pretend to know all the ins and outs of that series. But, I do know that the fellowship of the rings was about a mission. It was a calling followed together by a band of misfits and unlikely heroes that desired to do something necessary and sacrificial no matter the cost. The bonds formed in this kind of journey transformed all involved.
That is the true fellowship of the brotherhood of believers and I experienced more of that this year. Even as I write that sentence I want to say more…but it must wait for another time. It changes one, that kind of fellowship. Know that. It is much more than coffee in Styrofoam cups inside a church.
Farewells, Provision, Fellowship. Rich soil, I think, for the plantings of this next year, 2014.
What themes did you see in your life in 2013?