His brown eyes sparkled as he told me every last detail.
My son’s eyes slay me. And with so many stories to tell during these holiday-days, I am often completely taken with the joy in his eyes.
I use to sit in wonder of those moms who seemed to actually enjoy school breaks with their kids. I was not that mom. I was mostly afraid of this huge space of time and would have mini-panic attacks as to how I would keep my four always moving little ones occupied and entertained.
But this break has brought about a different reaction. I want to sit and soak in every moment. Soak in the stories. The laughter. The mess. Sit still . . yes, sit still . . . and look on with remembrance at all that God has done in my children’s lives in the past year. Remember His workings, in my own life. How He’s called me to live in the present. To stop comparing. To slow down to see the joy in their eyes.
We are so quick to move on, aren’t we?
We want the next thing, the next challenge, the next answer. The next year. We want to move on. So much that’s been hard, difficult, painful. Yes, so much.
But what has been good? What has been good from these holiday-days, from this season . . . from this year?
What if we took some time, before we cross into January 1st once again, to pause and look back? Instead of marching forward with resolutions and resolve, what if we first stopped to remember?
When we stop to remember, we say yes to how God has worked in our lives.
But so often we forget and move on. We just keep looking forward. So much to do, calendars to fill, goals to be accomplished. And although not intentionally, we can quickly become self-sufficient, trusting our to-do lists…tuning out His voice. We move so fast that we forget.
I need space to remember.
I am learning that while I must have plans, and hopes, and dreams, my soul needs that quiet place to rest. To reflect. To take note of how great is my God and how mightily He has moved in my life.
It’s difficult to find the time, isn’t it? In our fast moving world, it’s nearly impossible to slow down. However, we hear stories so often of friends or family, those who’ve lost sight of God’s goodness. Stories of lives who have forgotten the great wonders He has shown them, the miracles He has done. We read those very same stories in scripture, places like Psalm 78:11-12 and Nehemiah 9:16-17. And if we’re honest, we are all prone to see only what’s right in front of us, quickly forgetting the stories of just how far He’s taken us.
I want to remember.
What if we took some time to do that, as we soak in these last few moments of 2014?
What are your stories from this year? Stories, filled with wonder and joy…challenge and questions…loss and deep pain. How would you recap your year?
Maybe set aside some time and remember…
- What are your best experiences from 2014?
- Why did they make the list?
- What would you take from those times into 2015? (relationships, laughter, love, forgiveness, experience)
- How have you seen your own walk with the Lord deepen this year?
- What brought about this strengthening? Daily time with Him? A specific study or event?
- How has this impacted your every day? Your relationships?
- What Bible passages or specific verses have meant the most to you this year?
- Why? How have these Words impacted your life?
- How have you been strengthened as a result? Changed?
- What has been difficult or painful this year?
- How has this hurt shaped you and drawn you to the Lord?
- How does this bring you joy, knowing that your struggle has brought a greater dependence, wonder and love for Him?
Is there one word that would wrap up His goodness in your life this year? If so, write it down as your Ebenezer, or your stone of remembrance.
Then look up. And remember that your Father has been there through every drop of your story.
He has seen your path this year, He has walked with you.
He has been completely taken with the joy in your eyes, for He Himself was slain, to bring about your very own story of redemption.
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him, endured the cross . . . Hebrews 12:2