Lord, thank you for bringing me through 2016.
Thank you for preserving me, providing for me, enlightening me, calling me higher, and lifting my head. Thank you for your presence. Your unyielding presence. Your warring presence. Your protective presence. Your guiding presence. Your comforting presence. Your inviting presence.
Thank you for Your companionship. Your parenting. Your concern. Your commitment. Your capability.
All unmatched - eternally unmatched.
You are more committed to me than I am to myself, more committed to me than those I have trusted -even those I trust -- those you gifted to my life. I thank you, Lord, for takingYour relationship with me seriously... for pursuing me and drawing me close with Your goodness and mercy, promises and faithfulness, the purest motives and purest desire for intimacy and friendship. Thank you that who You are today, will not change tomorrow .
I'm grateful. I'm grateful that there's so much more to You than what this world could offer me. So much more to this existence, even beyond the grave. Thank You, for taking thought of me, and considering me worth your creation - worth inhabiting this world, worth Your use, worth Your attention & conversation. Thank you for concluding that I was worth your lifetime, death, and resurrection.
"If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied."
(1 Corinthians 15:19)
Today, I pray for the year to come.
I pray for your wisdom, to lead my life, and that Your Holy Spirit would guide it. Search and make clean my heart. Steady my heart. Steer my heart --- my passions & preoccupations. And just as you have stepped in & steered others' lives right into their destines - sometimes, unbeknownst to them, steer mine, Lord.
I welcome healing, revelation, new hope and understanding.
I welcome an increase of faith, Lord - Help my unbelief.
Your word says that YOU order the steps of a good man.
Create in me a clean heart and a right spirit.
Create in me a courageous heart and a bold spirit.
Cause me to live in your ordination and orchestration.
Teach me to walk in real-time obedience - knowing that what You want and what You'd like to do is so much bigger than what I think about it and what I can conclude.
It is an honor to be a part of Your agenda.
It's an honor that You have good plans for me.
It's an honor to belong to YOU.
Father, place a burden for your will so heavy on my heart that I do not neglect or reject the privilege of hearing & obeying you.
Because You make all things new, this will be a new kind of year --- not just because of strike of the clock, but because of the stripping of my heart. You've been working this thing in me all through 2016. I surrender all. I give up "my reputation." I take on a new one.
I'm all ears. All YOURS, Jesus.
HOPE: "A person or thing in which expectations are centered."
"The feeling that what is desired can be had."
It's the most wonderful time of the year... it is :)
But in the midst of good tidings and Christmas cheer, it's no secret that the holidays often highlight we've lost and now lack, or perhaps what we want and do not yet have. And while we know the reason for the season, feelings of disappointment and loneliness still manage to seep their way in. The year wraps up and we're eager to cross over. We rejoice, but we can also be tempted to mull over missed opportunities, unfulfilled longings, and incomplete endeavors.
You may be hopeful. You may be hopeless.
And it could actually depend on the day (YIKES! and #nojudgment)..
But, if your hope needs to be steadied and is under attack - and if you've given up parts of your life to whatever may come, I'm writing to fight with you.