We've been feeling a little Christmas-y over here this week and have been hanging lights, baking cookies, playing in the snow and listening to Christmas music!
Okay, who am I kidding? I am the one who has been hanging lights, baking cookies and listening to Christmas music! With Eliana, my little helper, of course:) We were busy out and about yesterday but a lot of the week we have been sticking close to home because it is just freezing outside!!
I was very thankful that our neighbor offered to drive the boys to school and home today (I take her son to/from every day and he comes to church with us!). I was worried about taking Eliana and Baby C out in this frigid weather so it was definitely a blessing. We stayed home and cleaned and baked Cranberry Orange Bread instead:)
As this year is quickly drawing to a close, we are finding ourselves thinking long and hard about what this last year has been for us. It wasn't anything like what we thought or hoped it would be but yet in the end, it was exactly what we needed and asked for. A year of growth.
Yes, I think that is exactly what we should call this year; The Year of Growth. Growth tends to make you think of green plants sprouting, blooming, vibrancy and joy. But if we are being honest (which I like to be on my blog!), we would admit that growth actually is incredibly painful. Spiritual growth, anyways! It involves breaking, humbling, shearing away of hard parts of your heart so that the new life can burst through and begin to bloom. So you can begin to hear the Father's quiet voice again.
That is exactly what is happening to us. I posted a couple months ago about what a difficult season this has been for us and it absolutely has been. Painful, crushing and sometimes hopeless. But God is beginning to answer all of our prayers over these past months and is filling us with new life and hope!
Do we have any answers to our problems or future yet? Nope! But we are sensing God moving and working and filling us up for what is to come. It feels exciting and scary all at the same time! Maybe our next year will be an adventure. Who knows?
All I know is that we are getting ready. Slowly, painfully, and hopefully getting ready. And we are starting by actually being thankful (mostly) for this past year and the pain it has brought. I'm sure we will feel the thankfulness even more as the freshness of the pain begins to heal and we are filled more and more with peace and hope.
Peace and hope are pretty powerful!
"Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ." Philemon 1:3