January 29, 2012
Christmas is my favorite holiday. It is the only time of year when it actually seems that people throughout the world are united. I realize that, in truth, the problems that separate us are still there and world peace is never going to be achieved, at least not before God's ultimate plan comes to fruition but for one brief, shining, moment each year it seems possible. I am overcome by such a feeling of good will, peace, and gratitude for Christ's birth, that everything seems to fade into the background. However, this Christmas I allowed all of the heartaches, I've been dealing with, to steal the joy out of the season. I feel like I let God down once again and though I know He understands and forgives me, I am disturbed by my own lack of trust in His faithfulness. Many times throughout my life I have seen how He cares for me. There have been mountains too high to climb, chasms too deep and wide to cross, valleys entirely shrouded in shadow, which would have kept me captive to my own fears and unable to move forward, was it not for God. I forever remain in awe of His goodness and mercy. So, next Christmas, I will strive to be focused on the reason for the season (Jesus) and less on the woes of everyday life. After all, there will always be problems trying to crowd out the joy in my life, but the God who can bring all things to submission is able to handle my little inconveniences. In the big picture that is what they are, inconveniences, nothing more.
On to the new year, 2012. The many issues we were facing last year have not gone away but I am determined, with God's help, to get through them with a better focus and less self pity. Oh, I will have my moments but, hopefully, I will not allow the ruler of this world to lead me astray. He is out there trying to recruit new sycophants who will be at his beck and call, fawning all over him in the hope that serving him will lead to power and control. In truth it will lead to an existence forever lived in anguish, an ultimate, eternal death sentence. He doesn't stop there, he goes after God's children with his cocky attitude, so sure he can steal them out of His hands. Satan is shrewd, he presents himself in a way that appeals to the needs of whom ever he is trying to persuade, to give up on God, but if you are God's nothing or no one can remove you from His grasp. Satan may try, it's what he does, but when we know the Lord, his attempts are futile.
It is hard to understand how Lucifer who was God's most beautiful angel was not content to be who God created him to be, but wanted power, control, and to be worshipped. Apparently, he decided he should be above his own creator, that he knew more then God. I suppose none of us should be too smug about this since, in reality, isn't that what we try to do every day in some way or another? Throughout history has this not been one of man's biggest problems, control, power struggles, which on a much larger scale leads to wars? There will always be someone who thinks they are the most intelligent, worthwhile, and most powerful human being on the planet. Just look back on what Hitler did and more recently what Hussein and Khadafi did to their own people and it isn't hard to see that evil exists, that Satan is ever on the prowl.
1 Peter 5:8 New International Version (NIV)
8. Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
That is why, I believe, we will never achieve world peace by anything we do but only through God's eternal plan.
My problems are minuscule, by contrast. Perhaps, God brought these things to mind so I would realize there are worse situations than mine. I know of no other reason I would even think about such things. Oh well, a new year has begun and I will do my best, with God to lead me, to look on whatever comes my way with an attitude of gratitude.
Keith's prognosis is favorable (yay), I have family who love me and whom I get to love, food, shelter and above all a Mighty God who cares for me. What more could I desire? I am a fortunate woman, indeed.