Hello again and I wish you all a peaceful, healthy, safe and blessed new year. Christmas went in a whirl again, didn't it? So familiar to previous Christmases in some ways - but so different in many other ways. We were fortunate enough to be able to visit my sister, brother-in-law and niece on the day, but realise that not everyone managed to see their families, and I am truly grateful for the few hours we spent together. I don't know when we will see them again but at least we can keep in touch by phone calls and texts.
I've been reading the news headlines again and began to panic and feel depressed and helpless about the Covid figures. I should be banned from perusing the news apps - I never learn! Once again, I had to remind myself who is in charge of this crazy world. You would think by now I would remember this, without having to constantly remind myself, wouldn't you? Alas, I am just another flawed human being who needs daily top-ups of prayer and Bible reading, and I have chosen the above Bible verse because it says it all for me. God is my strength when I feel weak; He's my refuge from life's pressures.
Prayer and Bible study are my daily faith 'injections' and it is all too easy to forget about them and just sink into my own feelings. I did that this morning - woke up fretting about the state of the world, wondering where we will be a year from now. I also had quite a vivid dream about my friend, Sam, who died suddenly almost four years ago. I still miss her; she was one of the best friends I ever had. So, this didn't help my mood. I felt quite down and unmotivated to write this blog. I actually wondered what the point of it all was! My lovely Kev was quite concerned about me; he never gets depressed, rarely has grumpy moods and generally puts me to shame. We prayed together, as every morning, but I went back to bed in a slump. I had tried to do my Bible study and could barely keep my eyes open. I did get up a couple of hours later feeling much better - maybe I was just tired. I certainly felt calmer and was ashamed of myself for my earlier thoughts.
"But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." (Isaiah 40:31)
Hoping in the Lord is expecting that His promise of strength will help us to rise above life's distractions and difficulties. It also means trusting in God. We have to trust Him to deliver us from this deadly virus. We need to keep focused on God, despite the many problems of this world. I like this verse; it is full of optimism and motivation.
Kev and I have just signed up for the "Walk 1000 miles this year" project and have completed 24.5 miles so far. It's not as daunting as it sounds! If you walk 2.7 miles each day, you will have completed 1000 miles by the end of the year. We love walking, so thought we would give it a go. I will share some of our adventures in future blogs. This verse obviously refers to spiritual strength, not physical, but I still like it, anyway. When people become Christians, they are not guaranteed an easy path in life. They still have problems and bad times to contend with. The trick is to keep your eye on the prize that is Jesus, and trust Him to be with you every step of the way.
"But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him." (Jeremiah 17:7)
The above was written yesterday, Thursday. Today is Friday, a new day, and I am feeling much more optimistic. But whatever the circumstances I find myself in, I am always grateful to have the Lord with me.
I hope you have enjoyed reading this blog. If you have, please will you share it with family, friends, colleagues - anyone who you think might enjoy it. Have a lovely weekend, stay safe and well.
No Christ, No Hope - Know Christ, Know Hope.