2016: New Year, Same God

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At the start of 2015 I resolved to make it a year of thankfulness. I made a jar and kept sticky notes and notepads next to it. I made it a habit to regularly write down things, moments, people that I was thankful for in hopes to develop an attitude of thankfulness. Today, on January 2, 2016 I opened that jar and read all of the things I had written, and a few little notes left by friends when they came over! 🙂 The picture above is a snippet of all the paper that was scattered in my living room floor.

God was abundantly faithful in 2015, as He always is. I got to watch Him work in the lives of close friends and family, as well as experience His work in my own life. I saw strongholds broken and dreams reborn. I experienced His grace upon grace and His lavish love. I am blessed to say that I love Him and know Him more today than I did a year ago, all thanks to His great love, grace and truth.

I had a couple of “firsts” in 2015: I got my first full-time job that I’m incredibly thankful for. I got my first apartment by myself and I’m paying bills monthly. I have started learning how to really cook meals for myself and it actually taste good! 🙂

It’s now 2016 and I have high hopes and expectations of what this year will bring! I am certain that there will be both good days and bad days, as there always are. I am certain that God’s mercies will be new with each day. I am certain that on the bad days, the dark days, His joy will come in the next morning. I am certain that His Word will be a constant source of hope, healing, wisdom, truth, love, and grace. I am certain that His love for me will continue to burn fiercely and His pursuit of me will not stop. I am certain that His Spirit will not forsake me and will continually convict me and lead me. I am certain that His faithfulness will be proved true time and again. I am certain that He will remain the same. Constant and true. Yesterday, today and forever. From the beginning, to 2016, and on into eternity. I am certain that in this ever-changing world and my ever-changing emotions and behaviors, that whatever each day of 2016 brings, the One True Mighty God of the Universe and Lover of my soul will remain the same, never-changing.

He is my hope in each new year. I have some resolutions for 2016, but I’ve actually already started working towards them a week before New Years even came. I want to give God every part of me. Total surrender. I am working on being healthier to glorify and honor God with this body He’s given me, physically, emotionally and mentally. I am also resolving to wait on the Lord–actively wait; to spend more time in prayer and journaling because I didn’t journal as much in 2015 as I would like to. And I am going to try to write on this blog more often, whether that’s weekly, bi-weekly, monthly…I don’t know how often yet, but I want to commit to writing more. I believe God has given me this passion for writing and this dream of someday writing a book(s), and I want to develop the habit and practice of writing regularly and honing the craft. I have been so touched by many books and blogs and articles that men and women have written in 2015. They have helped me lean into Jesus a little more with each word. I want to be that sort of encouragement and help to others as well.

So…as we enter into this new year of 2016, I hope that you are filled with all the hope of our Lord, Jesus Christ. I pray that He will draw you nearer and that you will find the One whom your soul was made by and for. I pray that He will guide you in your resolutions and goals to be better and do better. But ultimately, that you will find yourself complete in what Christ has done and find your identity in Him and who HE says you are. Goals are wonderful because we can always improve and we do have responsibility to take care of ourselves and those around us. But let’s remember to rest in the finished work of Christ and accept His gift of grace, forgiveness, redemption and reconciliation through Jesus. May we all seek Him and come to know and love Him with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.

As you enter into the exhilarating journey that is 2016, may the Lord bless you and keep you; may He make His face shine upon you and give you peace.

Love,

Anna

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