Monday, December 31, 2007

Welcome, 2008!

Well, here I am on the eve of a new year. I find myself feeling all sorts of emotions about this new year, a blank slate. My military wives have been reminding me what 2008 will bring this year: our husbands home! That pretty much makes 2008 my favorite year ever. But, I anticipate that with it, the year will bring me so much more.

My biggest prediction for 2007 was that I would graciously represent the Lord's provision during this difficult time in my life. That I would draw near to Him and draw on His strength giving hope to those who don't know Him.

Here is what I found to actually be true in 2007: I have been a trainwreck. Often, I did not feel close to the Lord, in contrast, I sometimes felt very distant from Him. Many times I have felt as though I couldn't pray, even when I wanted to. I have spent a lot of time complaining and feeling sorry for myself. And I have spent time bitter toward family and friends who have disappointed me. I have developed friendships that helped to sustain me. I made memories that I will not likely forget. I have been reminded what a gift marriage is. I have learned how lonely it is to parent alone And, I have watched our baby grow into a toddler right before my eyes.

Through all of it, the ups and the downs, the Lord has been with me. I haven't reflected Him in the way I had hoped I would. I have been more self-centered in this season of my life than in any other. And, truthfully, I have been disappointed in myself all too often. Yesterday morning I sat in church feeling very fragile. So much so, that I almost fled the building. Really, almost gathered my things, picked up my daughter and left the premises. But, I was hopeful that this feeling meant that the Lord had something special for me that morning. So, I briefly wept in the bathroom and then slipped into the back of the sanctuary. As I worshiped, I felt the Lord close to me. I confessed to Him how disappointed I have been in myself through this process. And He pressed in on my heart. He left the impression that He needed me to travel through this dark time. That it has been purposed. After that encounter, I didn't feel so fragile anymore. The tears dried up and I felt hopeful. Hopeful that I haven't been just a big, fat disappointment to myself and others, but instead have been learning valuable lessons that the Lord will use at another time to fulfill His great purpose. Then Dirty Job and I rushed the alter in a holy sprint toward the platform :)

So, yes, 2008 will be the year that my husband returns to me from war. But I have a feeling that it holds so much more!


Amazing Racer said...

Sprint on, sister!

I just gotta tell you how much you have taught me this last year. Know that you have NOT been a constant trainwreck, but rather a woman going through some refining!

The Lord sometimes uses our circumstances to shine light on different relationships that we haven't stepped back from in awhile. Just looking at the example of Major, how much more do you love him and appreciate WHO he is today???

I know this year has also brought some disappointments, and as you of course know, it won't be in vain. You can trust that He'll use it. I can tell you that I love my husband "better" because of the example you and Major have walked out.

I'm just thrilled to see what the Lord does in '08 for you and your family. I'm even more thrilled that I walk into this new year with such a friend as you!