December is a time to prepare...
Every December, I can't believe it's December. Yesterday seems like June to me and with each year, it seems to go by faster and faster. Last year, God really put it on my heart that winter is for resting. And last year, I was able to do that pretty well. This year, I do believe winter is still for rest but I am finding it harder to get myself there. It seems like this year, getting prepared is what rings in my heart and in my ears.
As I think about getting prepared for the year to come, I am so overwhelmed at looking back on the one I am stepping past. So many blessings. So many opportunities. So many gifts. So many moments. So many challenges. So many truths. And I am about to step into another year, quietly waiting... full of promise, growth, trials, opportunities, moments, lives, relationships, joys, tears, chances.
I want to embrace it. And I want to be prepared. I want to receive every opportunity, chance, and moment that God gives me with open hands. And I want to be thankful in it. I want to see Christ in it. I want to get closer to Him in it. I want to serve Him in it. And I want to joyful and content it.
I have been deeply touched by Ann Voskamp and her book, "One Thousand Gifts." Her blog has been speaking to me for most of the year, but her book is calling me and challenging me to take the dare. And I accept it with open hands.
My blog has gone from just updates on the kids to decorating to newsletter to journal. It is one of my favorite outlets to use to give glory to my Father and Savior. How can I not share what He has done and continues to do in my life? I have told Him again and again that I would shout it from the rooftops... His greatness... how personal He is... how mighty and active and real and alive and audacious! And this has become my rooftop.
So on January 1st, my blog will include my journey to One Thousand Gifts. And I pray that just as Ann has inspired by sharing her journey, someone will be encouraged by mine.
Tomorrow, we pick up a host child that we will host for the next two and a half weeks. We receive this with open hands and can't wait to see what God has in store for her and for us! And when this little one flies back to Latvia on January 12th, I will fly back with her and the other children. I will be going to the orphanages to meet with directors and build relationships. I will love on children and tell them about Jesus and His love for them. I will interview them and photograph them so they can be listed on the summer host program of 2012. And I will receive this with open hands... taking every moment and opportunity He gives me and embracing it for His glory.
Yes, December is a time to prepare... for beautiful moments ahead.