We have nearly walked the entirety of 2015. Just over the horizon, we are about to reach the ledge of this year and take a leap into a brand new year.
For some of us the landscape of 2015 was full of smooth plateaus and green grass, for others there were rocky mountaintops, and yet others had deep crevices that had to be traveled. Regardless, the terrain of the last year we find ourselves at the end of this year and on the verge of a brand new one.
At our Christmas Candlelight services I ran into a dear friend and in our brief visit she said, ‘I bet you’re ready to erase 2015 off the books.’ You see, this last year has been my most challenging year physically. My journey was to walk through chemotherapy for breast cancer. I had weeks of deep crevices to travail and tall mountains to climb over during my two thousand fifteen. I covered some hard ground but I made it. And I find myself at the break of a band new year.
At the beginning of this year my surgeon, without even knowing it, gave me a few word straight from The Lord that changed my perspective. She simply said, “Just keep walking.” As the surgeon gave us the diagnosis… in the middle of receiving that medical report, God reminded me of this verse:
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;
thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Psalms 23:4
At the end of the consultation she added, “Keep putting one foot in front of the other. Don’t stop. Keep walking.”
During those many long weeks it seemed like the other side was too far to even see, much less traverse, but The Lord brought back to memory those few words: Keep Walking. Don’t stop. Walk through the valley!
What terrain has your past year looked like? Was your year a walk in the park? (I’ve had years like that.) Or was it a hard path to pace? (Mine was.) I would like to propose that as we walk up to the end of this year that we prepare to step into a new year, fresh and unstained with past troubles. I would like to suggest that we intentionally take these last few days of 2015 and unpack our baggage of souvenirs, keepsakes, hurts, and scars that we have picked up along the way. It’s time to evaluate, to examine each one and ask God if it belongs back in our bags? Is this something we need to carry into the New Year or is it something we should lay down? Can we simply give it to Him to carry for us?
Leave the old year where it fell. Like my friend reminded me; 2015 is about to be put behind me. I am very excited to step into 2016 and leave behind a few things like breast cancer. You see, I am not a breast cancer survivor. I am a woman who had breast cancer. It does not define me. It’s not who I am. You are not a divorced woman, but a woman who had a divorce. You are not a widow, but a woman whose husband died. You are not alone, but you are a woman focused on God’s plan for your life. Don’t let your circumstances define you. You may not have walked through chemo, but your mountains were a tough territory to hike too. Choose to define yourself by what God says about you:
You are more than a conqueror. Romans 8:37
God will make your pathway straight. Proverbs 3:6
God himself goes before you and will never leave you. Deuteronomy 31:8
He works all things for good. Romans 8:28
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Your Turn: What does the last few days of your year look like? What do you most want to be thankful for one year from now? How can you organize your life to do the things that cause you to smile? Evaluated reflection turns experience into insight. ~ Cindy