It has perhaps been the hardest of my life. Perhaps not the hardest physically but definitely the hardest emotionally, mentally, financially and spiritually. There have been many obstacles to overcome, obstacles that return over and again. Some that feel insurmountable, some that seem completely unbeatable.
It has been a year of constant, ever in motion change for me personally and for my family. I can say that right now at this moment, this last day of 2013 that I am different than I was a year ago. I have a far more humble spirit, a deeper belief in the goodness of people, a tighter hold on my faith that God will see me through the storm, a warmer heart but as well a stricken soul of fear of the future and what Gods plan for me and my family is, a heart that is afraid of what 2014 might bring, but a hopeful heart at the same time.
I am humbled daily by God's love for me and my family. He provided in abundance for my children at Christmas not because presents are important but simply because I asked him to not let them suffer in our financial weakness. He showered them, and he even provided the ability for me to obtain and create gifts for them and others that I love. He helped me teach my children that Christmas is really about Jesus and his sacrifice so that I might be able to kneel and ask Our Father to provide excess for my children, so they don't feel want at Christmas.
Years ago we attended this wonderful church in Concord, CA named Sanctuary. In this church we learned the true meaning of family. We adored our church, we ached when we had to leave it. We searched for a church like it, but none appeared. We maintained friendships from that church, many whom I am proud to call close friends but we were unable to find such a church family again. Until this year. We found such a church here in Bedford, TX. The Mission it is called. A life of missional living is what it is about. I posted on their website asking for prayer, but in their missional ways they saw through the post to the dire reality of us at that moment. I thank God for both churches and the friends gleaned from both, for the believers I can turn to when I need prayer or even something more tangible.
God provided for is this year in so many ways, that while this year was a trial I do not wish to repeat, I am thankful for all the ways God carried us through. From our churches, to our friends, our family, our children, the blessing of a new child born in this very home to the food in our bellies, the lights being on, the cars we drive, the Christmas tree we decorated, the presents the children opened.
So what has this year done to me, it has changed me. I am a stronger person for it, a more honest person, a more transparent person. It made me aware of beauty of a child's smile, what joy could be pulled from a single flower growing in the sun, what faith could be pulled from the feeling of birthing a child of your womb, the simple beauty of my life.
My life might be hard, but it is beautiful. It is God given, God provided and God lead. It is simply divine.