Friday, December 31, 2010

2011... Behold, I Make All Things New

 I am not one to go shoe shopping.  As a matter of fact, it took me a year to fork out the money to buy boots that I had been longing for.. and trust me, I don't often "long" for shoes, boots, etc....  But a great sale.... called my name, and I fell victim.  The shoes in my closet reveal the fact that the outer covering of my feet, truly don't make a huge impact on my comings and goings.  Of course, the older I get the more I hear.. it's not the look but the feel, it's not the feel but the support.  How much support is there in flip flops??

It's New Years eve... I hear that's a special day.   For the past several years, for me it has come to mean the beginning of paperwork.  Taxes... paperwork... checkbooks... taxes... and more taxes.  It's a mindset.  Everyone does taxes... don't they?  no.

But the beginning of a new year is a chance to make things different.   People still have big celebrations.  They make resolutions and promises with good intention.  Memory over-load of the year before.  And a ball drops in New York city.

While looking for a "suitable" marque for the  church where I work (how did I get that task???), I came across a small paragraph about the new year.  It caught my attention.  It didn't fit our marque but it made me think.  And thinking.. I appreciate it, especially since it seems to be more of a challenge for me these days. 

The bottom line was that the new year was an "unspoiled page".. an opportunity to do better than the year before. An opportunity to practice what has been learned.  An opportunity to renew allegiance to God.

Over the past few weeks, I have fallen back in love with a scripture from Zephaniah.  It reminds me that I am His... He is with me.  He delights in me.. even quietens me when I am afraid.  And the most tender portion of this scripture to me.. is that he sings over me!

I find comfort in that... knowing that my heavenly Father blesses me with a certain rhythm.  A rhythm .. I didn't earn or deserve.  A rhythm that was birthed purely by grace.. and grace alone.  His rhythm.

I'm tired.  I'm just really tired.  I've got new boots... and I'm tired.  It would be easy to stay in the safety of my home and just enjoy my boots by myself and honestly that would satisfy my soul.   I'm adjusting.  I'm accepting.  It is what it is.

But I took a day (a day in this instance means a few hours...) away from being "focused" and "driven" and let myself relax.  And it was "weird".  I liked it.  It hit me that something really is wrong.   I found myself wanting to be BFF's with the sales clerks that looked me dead in the face.  I made sure I saw their name tag and called them by name.  They smiled .. and liked hearing their name.  And I really liked that!  Maybe I am still relational.  God did create us that way.. right??  I'm more than a blank slate... safety is sometimes in a blank slate.   There are some jobs that it just pays to be a blank slate.  It is safer.  That's bizarre.  Shouldn't be that way.   It's really weird when you work at a church and people think you have just one long devotional day with God.  I mean "He is your boss.. right?? How awesome can THAT be??"

Tomorrow's a new day.. oh yeah, it's new year's day.  I'm going to a wedding where a young couple will begin a new life as husband and wife.  A mother will give birth to a 19 year old daughter-in-law.  She will instantly become a grandmother to a precious little boy.  "In-laws" will become prayer partners for this young family.  "Behold, I make all things new."  I pray that God will be this couples focus as 2011 begins.  What a way to start a new year... (and no, it's not the RED NECK wedding down the road.. arrghh!!)

All things have an opportunity of being  new.. even the tax forms.  January will be a blur as has December.  I look forward to February.

As the digital clock lights up the new year, I'll be asleep and I really like that, remember I'm tired!!   Bring on a lullaby Lord... and in return, let me wake up with a song for You.  Because it really is my desire.. underneath this blank slate.

"The LORD your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing." Zep 3:17

I woke up this morning feeling very guilty about this blog...  so many people have reason to keep the blank slate...  stay inside  and they don't even have a pair of new boots.  And worse, some people don't understand the rhythm of God's grace.  The words of Zephaniah don't grab their heart like they did mine.  So much I do not understand about the things of God, but I am learning that His purpose will stand... providence will prevail.  I'll leave this blog up ... I heard His rhythm while I wrote it and I liked that.. I really liked that.


  1. And I LIKED it....was so excited when I saw there was a new blog from Christians...Criminals and Chickens. Love you

  2. Thanks Jo Ellen! Just what I needed to jump start this Day/Year. Happy New Year to you and yours! Richard

  3. I LOVE IT! You and I need to talk ....... Love it...

  4. Mrs. Jo Ellen I like your blog a lot of times I dont take out time to read blogs or short storys. We all live such a rushed life and things just pass us buy and we dont realize that we need to take the time to slow down. This blog was really good! Happy New Year!
    Jennifer Hayman

  5. May His mercies truly be new every day and light of His glory shine brightly in your soul. Rest and savor the Grace found only in Christ. Pour yourself out for the kingdom andrest so He can reflect in your mind while renewing your hope in Him. I love you and look forward to this new year of our Lord.

    As I sit here with my family in the midst of several Bhuddists, I am reminded of just how I should not be able to see Him and am gratefulfor His grace in my own life. Our God saves and creates a people for Himself who deserve nothing and yet we are freely saved in spite of ourselves.