If you started the year hopeful for new beginnings, excited for a fresh start and expectant to see change in yourself and circumstances, but unexpected life challenges have threatened to extinguish the flame of hope in you, I’m here to tell you: you are not alone and God is not done with you.
I’m not sure how the first twenty plus days of the new year and new decade have been for you, but if I’m honest…my 2020 has been pretty difficult so far. Our family’s only vehicle broke down the day before Christmas and as I’m writing this still remains in the mechanics shop, a combination of colds, coughs, and fevers have gone through our family one by one for the last two months, and as Georgia’s weather just plummeted to freezing temperatures…our heating system has given out.
If I focus on what’s not working out or what’s going wrong, I’ll stay in a place of discouragement, but when I shift my focus on all the blessings surrounding me I’m immediately uplifted.
I think of my beautiful babies (including this chocolate drop above, our 7 month old, Hanna Shiloh) who I get to spend each day with and the priceless opportunity I have to watch them grow and learn and see the world with child-like wonder. I think of my best friend and husband of 6 years who daily and faithfully works hard to support our family and who I get to do life and grow in love with each year.
What about you? What are those constant blessings in your life you and I can at times overlook? Maybe it’s your health, a loving parent, a best friend, your school or job. Take a moment to give thanks for this seemingly mundane, yet invaluable area.
2020 may not look exactly as you and I envisioned it would be January 1st, but it’s not over yet and when you stop to think of the goodness in your life you may be surprised to see how God is already working things out on your behalf. God’s promises are still true, He is still with you and still has good plans to prosper you, to give you a hope and a future.
Even the situations that have been frustrating you the most can change in a moment. Or even more significantly, your perspective, outlook, and response to the situation can change in a moment.
I think about Joseph in biblical times. He was a dreamer, a man of faith who despite his intellect, giftings, and leadership abilities found himself in a pit. From the pit he was then sold into slavery and even after this, found himself being wrongly accused and thrown into prison.
When all hope seemed lost, after years in prison, suddenly Joseph was called before the pharaoh and in a moment his life changed forever.
“So Pharaoh sent for Joseph, and he was quickly brought from the dungeon. When he had shaved and changed his clothes, he came before Pharaoh.” Genesis 41:14 NIV
In a moment, everything can change.
In a moment my heat can be fixed, our car can be taken out of the shop, our little ones’ coughs can be be healed.
In a moment, your most frustrating situation can completely change.
And even if doesn’t change overnight, we’re promised that everything will eventually work out for our good:
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)
We may have encountered unexpected difficulties but it doesn’t take away from the all the incredible possibilities to come. Temporal challenges can’t take away our eternal hope.
So if you’re feeling discouraged, if like me you need a reminder that your current situation isn’t your final situation, let me be your friend and sister today to tell you to never forget that God is writing your story. He is the author and finisher of your fate, He’s ultimately the One in control. He has amazing plans for you and wants to partner with you in 2020 to create the BEST year of our life.
I hope you feel more encouraged after reading this post than when you first came to this page. Please know I am here for you and believing the best is yet to come for you and I. For more on renewing your mind for this new year, feel free to visit my last post where I shared how to create a new mindset for this new year.
I’m sending my love to you! How has the start of your new year been going? Has this post helped lift your spirits or remind you of God’s promises over your life? I would love to hear from and respond to you <3
With so much love,