January. I’m not ready for it. Life has been quite challenging in the last two months and I’m not ready. I’m still processing having witnessed someone walk into the outstretched arms of God, saying goodbyes to a dog of fourteen years, changing jobs, watching my parents age, and most days watching the checkbook balance too closely. I’ve been sick with the flu for the last 6 days of the year – not the way I wanted to transition and unusual for me to need a doctor visit.
I’m an over-thinker by trait, detailed encourager by gift, and ponderer at heart. When there is much that requires large portions of the spirit and soul to consume and process, I can feel down-trodden before I recognize it. A combination of weary and amazed.
When I take in a review of the year all at once, as I am prone to do, I can feel a little too heavy. Remarkably wonderful and amazingly challenging events have filled the calendar just removed from the wall. When taken one at the time and remembering how God has seen me through each one reminds my heart that I really am OK. I am moving forward, or being moved along by that loving unseen hand.
But I still don’t feel ready.
Faith wants to run with me into the new year, shouting back at me, “Come on! Let’s try something new and see what God does with it! With Him, we can do anything!” And I breathe more deeply and pick up my pace, a fresh smile appearing…that fades all too quickly because insecurity has grabbed onto my heals insisting on joining me into everything. I have realized lately how fear and anger are very closely acquainted.
I find that what feels like a weary burden of questions, fear, and unbelief is actually something the Lord wants to reveal to me. I have found that I must always feel it, see it, to understand the healing needed, then bring it to God, the revealer of all, so that He can shift the burden from my shoulders to His. So that He can touch that years-old tender spot in me and change it. He always knows. And many times as I realize what I actually carry, the wounds of past damage, I am angry that so much healing is still needed. It causes me to look back at my past, wincing in pain, tears filling eyes, washing face, wetting sleeve. Tired of struggle.
I want to be done with this. These fears, insecurities, pain. I want to be whole.
And I remember a beach some thirteen years ago now, the finding of a whole whelk shell, the hearing of “I can make you whole.” The throwing of my whole, fractured self upon the Voice that spoke me into being while He whispered, “Just as My Son had to continually remember and voice ‘I am who my Father says I am,’ so you are who I say you are, my child.”
And He has done so much. I am different, so very different from that night on that South Carolina beach. And it’s the change that builds my faith, that reminds me that He will continue the revealing. I may still carry wounds into this new year, but I am learning to look with stronger faith because I have learned to rehearse as Moses, King David, Job and others exactly what God has done before as a foundation to build my expectation of what is possible.
In the remembering the stuff of testimony, my faith is renewed. And I like Job’s words best, “My ears had heard of you, but now my eyes have seen you.” (Job 42:5)
His experience was not determined by his performance, but by God’s goodness and power and faithfulness. And ready or not, He is with me as I walk forward into new days, new weeks, new years. I never walk alone. I feel the soul rest, the breathing deepens, and I have courage to wonder what will be next. I trust His healing of me – even though it’s hard from my view at times – it is and will be complete.
More healing, more blessing. More blessing, the more I can spill that same change into the world around me like a song that never ends. He sings over me and tunes my heart to sing along. And even if I hit sour notes at times, I can lean forward knowing the Author will strain to hear the refrain and lift my voice above the din of the noise of fear, so that it loses its grip, and what I carry into the new year rings clearly so that others hear what He has done for me.
So to Him for a new year of possibility with 100% probability of giving thanks, I say yes.
(c) Robin Lawrimore, January 1, 2013
Dedicated with much appreciation to Kim Borrelli, a life coach and dear friend.