I stumbled on my word for 2019 early on Jan 1st, while I was reading my Bible. God has a funny way of bringing things to us when we least expect them. Coffee in hand and worship music playing, just trying to drowned out voices of failure swirling in my head, I opened my Bible to 2 Timothy…
Paul writes to Timothy and warns him that he needs to be ready. Paul explains that Timothy will have to preach even when people don’t want to hear it, even while he is enduring hardships, Paul tells him that his job is to “fulfill your ministry.”
That word endure stood out to me. Each verse I turned to showed me that THIS was supposed to be my word for 2019.
Hebrews 12:1 tells us (in the NLT translation);
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.
One of the verses I read over and over as we were dealing with JC’s back injuries was also written by Paul, over in Romans chapter 5. Verses 3-4 say;
We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.
Patience, perseverance, now endurance. All helping to grow me, and you, into the best versions of ourselves possible. SO LONG, as we use these trials to draw us closer to God. Just when I think I am out of my desert place, God reminds me that I am not the one in control. That I need to be dependent on Him, not on myself.
Finally no matter what we’re facing we can have that hope, we can have trust that our God is good and his plans are good. That last 1/2 of Psalms 30:5 reminds us;
Weeping may endure for a night,
But joy comes in the morning.
I could always use more joy. Remind me this year that my hope is not found in this world, but in you alone. Help me to cling to the promises in these verses even when life gets chaotic. Fill me with an assurance of who YOU say I am Lord, and help build in me an endurance that will accomplish whatever Kingdom work you place before me. Lord, I pray that 2019 sees change. Not just in my life, but in each person reading this. Draw us closer to you. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen!