With each new year, we look forward to the one ahead, full of the unknown, full of hope. Yet I think in order to fully embrace the year ahead, we have to look back first. In looking back, we can see the areas that flourished and those that need some extra attention. I spent the last few days of 2016 answering these questions. I was convicted, challenged, and honestly, a little depressed by the answers I gave.
Last year was my year of survival. On the outside, those around me may not have seen anything amiss. Yet inside, the struggles were some of the most difficult I have ever endured. God is gracious and as this new year rolls in, I am more clearly seeing His hand as He holds me up when I can't. I praise God for my husband who is my constant comfort when my emotions come crashing down. I am daily thankful for my girls who are more than I deserve. So I say all this to reiterate what I've tried to say in the past, my life is not perfect. I have struggles just like everyone else.
So what does this next year have to hold? Rest.
I pray for rest in my home, in my marriage, in our daily school life, and most of all, in my soul. Over the last few weeks of January, I hope to share more of what I pray this rest will look like, but for now, this is what I pray...
I pray for slow mornings centered on God's Word, sprinkled with time in good books, music, and art. I pray that I'm not producing little Pharisees in my girls, but sisters in Christ who desire to know God more and learn with ferocious appetites.
I pray this beautiful new room (built by my wonderful husband) will be a haven over this next year, a place of retreat to dive into our studies, and focus on the calling God has placed on our family.
I pray for more time with this man of mine. Whether it's a quick date out or some quality moments at home, I pray that our marriage will only grow stronger.
I pray for more time at home around nourishing meals, time to cook with girls.
I pray for rest in the great outdoors, for time spent in our favorite books, laughter on our new zipline, and lots of marshmallows roasted around the fire pit.
I pray for new adventures with these people I call mine. They bring such joy. May I too find such joy as I once had.
Last, but not least, I pray for daily rest in God's word. I pray for the strength to get up, to find a place of quiet retreat, and for God to do a new work in my life.