The dawning of a new day, a new year…
December was a slow shifting into a season of rejoicing in His coming, of savoring treasured moments and fresh glimpses of our Savior. I was thankful for the pace He prompted, allowing me to enter January much less exhausted than other years.
Could it be that my “tucked away” year positioned my heart closer to His and further from anything “usual?” Yes, please! May my “usual” grow closer and closer to the heart of GOD and may “tucked away” be more than just a year or a season, but a sweet retreat … often.
I sense a turning of the page as we enter this new year. My early morning walks remind me to LOOK UP. The rising sun draws my heart, nudging it to long for His thoughts about the months ahead.
As early sun rays stretched further and further through the tree branches one morning, a new word echoed… E M E R G I N G.
Is He preparing me to step bravely from this “tucked away” place with Him? What might that look like? What new assignments might He have for me? If I’m honest, I’ve gotten quite comfortable in my little bubble with Him. Stepping out seems a bit daunting and uncertain.
He knows I have questions, so He says, “ask Me.”
“Call to Me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things that you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3
Turning the page can be both thrilling and unnerving. Sadly, change can undo me – in a heartbeat! And these verses in Daily Light flashed me back to the last change I didn’t weather well – our move to south FL seven years ago. It was a very difficult transition – the swirl of emotions, the fog of uncertainty, the challenge of everything unfamiliar. But in the midst of the struggle to find solid ground in our new home, these same Words steadied me:
“Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me…” Matthew 11:28-29
I was in a gentle yoke with Him! He offered to carry the lion-share of the weight. But also, in that place, I would be close enough to hear His voice, watch His movements, learn His ways. He would patiently wait for me, but we would only be able to move forward when I was brave enough to take the next step. To trust Him enough to settle in and ask Him where to get to work – to see His plans start to unfold.
Seven years later, I can say that SO much work has been done! Most of it has been in my own heart. The hunger for His Word has grown, as necessary as breathing. The longing to know His heart has deepened, and I ask Him to still me again and again so I can hear His voice – in true, 2-way dialogue. It is precious!
But just as I begin to find surer footing next to His, our little world is “on the move” again.
This time we are not updating our mailing address. But change is happening! My husband is starting a new job, braving a new schedule. My high-schoolers are spreading their wings and becoming more independent. My roles are shifting and more than ever before, I am asking Him – “what are Your plans for this new chapter? For them? For me?”
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11
As each of them finds their own new way, could He have something in mind just for me? I am still a wife and a mom. Some things will stay the same – be faithful, be available, speak His truth, pray earnestly, serve in love. But my days may begin to look very different. I can’t begin to imagine it, really…
Knowing He is the One orchestrating all things brings great comfort and confidence. But the unknown can still throw me. Even as my heart skips a beat with eager anticipation, I can just as easily shrink back, second guess, cling to the known and familiar.
And so, He reminds me again… “come to Me, be yoked with Me… let Me teach you… I am gentle… My yoke is easy, the burden I give you is light… you will find rest for your soul.”
Stepping out of this “tucked away” place, He is still with me. I choose His yoke – again – intentionally choosing nearness to Him. The lessons will continue, so I will keep learning. And He is so gentle. The burdens He calls me to bear will be easy and light when He shows me how to manage them. The new opportunities will be more exciting than anxious when all of Him infuses all of me to meet them. Even stepping out, it will still be at His pace. My soul will continue to find rest and stillness by His side.
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All of this dawning on that stunning morning, a new day in a new year…
light breaking through the trees, sending a soft blush into the sky, the ducks silently gliding across the pond, and my favorite little turtles lifting their heads just above the surface of the water to welcome the sun…
and this word of encouragement from His heart to mine… “emerging can be slow, just like the slow shifting into My season last month, just like those little turtles… bravely stretching toward the light, emerging from their shells. Take My hand, I never ask you to do this alone. Just like a turtle’s shell, your Shelter will always go with you, always surround you… rest in My love for it is true and unchanging. I will teach you and show you the way.”
“Show me the right path, O LORD, point out the road for me to follow. Lead me by Your truth and teach me. For You are the GOD of my salvation. All day long I put my hope in You.” Psalm 25:4-5
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