What can I share with you as we step into yet another New Year? The word God is impressing on me is to face it with ‘confidence and joy.’
I have been going through a great sadness as my beloved Brother in law, Pastor Les Davies, has been dying. Glory for him, but a great loss for us who were close to him. And then there is the ever persistent challenge of old age, for Facebook will soon remind you that I have a birthday coming up; while always we hear terrible news of suffering around the world. So how can we obey this word?
God first told me to ‘face the future with confidence and joy,’ as I was about to continue my journey into the remote Highlands of Papua New Guinea. It had taken great courage to leave my family and everything I knew, to leave UK and fly to Australia. Staying there for a month I became overwhelmed by the thought of the vast distances that lay not only behind, but still before me.
But now God was asking me to step out with confidence and joy. If you had said it, I would have replied, ‘It is all very well for you to talk.’ But it wasn’t you, but God, who promises to always be with us. It is he who enabled me then, and he will enable each of us to face whatever lies before us in this New Year.
Now, it is not the vast distances across the Pacific and the mountains of Papua New Guinea that I am facing, but just the drive, partly motorway, up the Swansea Valley to attend my dear Brother in law’s funeral. Surely the Lord will provide someone to drive and look after this frail little old lady?
Yes, he is well able, but I know God does not want me to think of myself as a frail little old lady. ‘As my days, so shall my strength be.’ Moses didn’t begin his ministry until he was 80 and at 120 his strength had not abated, so God is reminding me, still only 83 years young, not to think of giving up but to share with you his admonition, to ‘face the future with confidence and joy.’
A whole New Year, but first, just this day
To face with joy as we go on our way
We’ve fresh air to breath and a glad new song
To sing, and new fears we must bid ‘Be-gone.’
New friends to greet but our old ones to treasure
And always new blessings in richest of measure
So we welcome this year knowing life is for living
A gift from our God, always loving and giving.