The Afterglow


One day into the New Year and my mind races ahead plunging full speed into it, that is, my mind and not much else. I am already borrowing trouble and worrying about events that have yet to happen, but I am getting better about that. Now when I sense myself doing that, I pull away and find that quiet place in my soul that’s been hollowed out by His Spirit and I try to rest in Him until my mental wheels slow and eventually stop. Most of the time, I have a peace about the coming year.

I was reading something yesterday that said none of us are made to stay the same. God made us and everything else  in this universe to change, to transition into something else. New seasons, new growth, parts of us die and are reborn. Change is good. It keeps us alive, on our toes and yet I am a creature of habit and I don’t like being out of my comfort zone. I have found security in my routine, my job, my little corner of the world. But true security is found in Christ and nothing else. As my old Pastor used to say, it’s Jesus plus nothing.

So I take a deep and thankful breath as I look back and see where God has taken us and brought us. And I look even further back and I know I have no reason to fear anything. He has always been there and He always will. That part will never change.


Sometimes you just need to take a step forward in the fog, and soon things will begin to take shape. You’ll see the splashes of color and miracles along the way if you just keep walking.

It’s the last day of  four 12 hour shifts and I feel a little like how Tolkien so aptly described it when Bilbo Baggins said: “I feel thin, sort of stretched, like butter scraped over too much bread.” Yep. That’s the feeling. I am looking forward to being huddled in the shop tomorrow in the early morning darkness folded around me.  I need my battery charged and that’s the best way I know to do it, that and being in nature.

This is a new stage for Elaine, and I want to help her through it. Before, every spare minute was filled to overflowing when her Mom was still alive, especially at the last stages. Now she’s finding big pockets of time and feeling like something is missing. When you have been a caretaker so long it’s hard to know what to do when it’s over. No one ever prepares you for that.

I am ready to close out the week, and start a New Year.

I will end with one of my favorite poems of all time……..

Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening 

By Robert Frost

Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.

Assurance about what we don’t (yet) see


Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible. Hebrews 11:1-3

 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Hebrews 11:6

I can’t think of a better way to bring in the New Year than sitting on this shore watching the New Year roll in along with the tide, but since I can’t I thought I would post this pic and visualize myself there anyway. Yet, sitting here gazing at the lights on the tree that will soon be packed away, I am sipping coffee still snug in my big robe and I find that ain’t too shabby either. There is much to be thankful for.

As I drifted off to sleep last night, I can’t say that I felt all that hopeful about 2014. In the immediate, I will be going back to work on Thursday, and work right now is very stressful. I’d just as soon not go back. As I don’t have that luxury, I will continue to trust God to get me in the door each day. He’s never failed me yet.

It’s easy to get bogged down with unknowns, but thankfully, the knowns and what I know about God far outnumber the unknowns.

For that reason alone, this New Year rings with hope for me. I found myself surprised by joy this morning. I am rich with a heritage of belief in a God that holds me and all those I hold dear close.

God surprises me with His love again and again. No matter how many times I failed myself, others and Him last year, He reminded me this morning that His love for me has no end, it is infinite and unconditional and reaches past eternity.

On the edge of this world is another one shimmering in the light, where He is. That is where all our hope lies. That’s our future, and we carry it with us even now.

There is no room for fear in that kind of hope. It goes along with my new phrase for the year which is:

Faith over Fear.

As I prepare to enjoy this day, Lord. Thank you, thank you, thank you for being here with me, with us. I can’t imagine a better way to start the New Year.

As I sit here teary eyed watching the Rose Parade, I remember the year we got to go work on the floats with Home Depot. It was an unbelievable experience to see those huge floats up close. I will never forget it, and now each year I find myself crying when I watch, remembering how beautiful those floats, those flowers were.

As the Marine Marching Band plays, I cry again. I still love my country, despite all I am unhappy with in the current administration. Yes, I am bowled over with the beauty of the world. Amidst the backdrop of so much heartache and strife on the news, there is so much good.

Happy New Year world……Keep looking up, for our redemption draws nigh!

As for me, I am hoping for what I can’t yet fully see. God is working behind the scenes for our good, always. That’s always reason to hope.