Picking one little word for the year is a tricky thing, a personal thing, for me, a prayerful thing.
I often begin reflecting on how the current word of the year has been meaningful in late November or early December. I think back to the different ways the word impacted my hopes, thoughts, reactions, and plans throughout the year. How it has guided and directed me, reminded me of grace and brought me peace.
By mid-December, I find myself thinking about the year ahead. Thinking about my hopes and dreams, setting goals and milestones. Throughout it all, there is prayer, conversations with God about His hopes, desires, plans for the year ahead. Requests for that one little word that will guide and direct, bring grace and peace.
Have you ever looked at a huge, messy situation in front of you and thought, “I just can’t”? Perhaps the thought of walking through whatever that thing is — financial strain, relationship issues, a health crisis — is simply too much to bear.
There must be another way, a way around this hot mess of a situation, you think. You close your eyes for just a moment and offer up this simple prayer, “Please, let there be another way. Please move this struggle from my path.”
But then you open your eyes and finances are still uncertain, the relationship is still tricky and the health crisis hasn’t budged.
So then what?
There are two choices – the path around or the path through.
This site is supposed to be a safe place where we can bear our hearts to each other, lift each other up, comfort and encourage one another. And as the Chief Cheerleader, it’s my job to create that space. It’s my job to start the healing with confessions of my own, with honesty, vulnerability and brokenness. It’s my job to talk about hard things and share how I find joy and hope in any situation.
And I’ve been silent.
I’ve been silent because I simply didn’t have the words. The news of the world had just become too much. I was left stunned and broken and completely mute.
Until last night.
Grief is a strange thing. Some days it simply sits with you as a constant companion, never interrupting your rhythm and yet, always present.
Other days, waves of sadness, love, depression and joy come one after another as you miss your loved one terribly and at the same moment, are intensely grateful for the time you had together. Joy and grief are an unlikely pair, but here they are, sitting together with us.
I was driving home the other day and the Don Williams song “Lord, I hope this day is good” came on the radio and almost as soon as the song started, tears started flowing down my cheeks. The song has always had this effect on me and yet, I never could put my finger on why.
And then it hit me. The raw vulnerability of the chorus reminded me of all the times I had cried out to God with a similar plea.