The Christmas tree still stands in the living room corner because parting with the lights is an annual struggle. But I completed a simple year-end reflection, welcomed the new year by going to bed at 10pm, and have since been thinking about goals and resets and not confusing fresh vision with what I perceive to be the ideal version of myself.
Am I too late to the conversation?
The other night, I told a friend that even without a list of resolutions, I appreciate the start of a new year for its nudge to consider priorities. To affirm what I want to be most important, most true. Loving God, serving those in my home, and investing in my community are not new or fanciful things, and they are just as important in August as they are in January. But it’s possible to forget that when you’re busy being grumbly and self-sufficient, cleaning out the coffee filter basket every morning, perfuming the nursery as you empty the diaper genie, and figuring stuff out yourself rather than submitting it to another.
January, in its most redeemed form, invites me to sit down for a minute.
I’m thinking about friends who will watch their babies grow, enter into marriage, start new jobs, and keep on doing the good and hard work. I’m also thinking about friends still bearing the sadnesses of last year, for whom little about this month feels fresh. Hope in the thick of the day can seem half-formed and washed out.
Breanne Rodgers writes, “You don’t have to roar into the fresh year / You need only inch towards His light.”
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22-23)
They are new every morning, for all of us, and not just in the first three weeks of January.
It is remarkable to me, and also not, that no matter how much consolation I have received from the Lord Himself, I still try to get peace by working for it. Again, I am re-learning to seek refuge in the One who truly provides it, rather than in the frenetic arms of activity.
The two Scriptures below have deeply resonated with me in this season. I’m asking what it looks like to do what needs done–to attend to the people and the things–without depending on that activity for my solace and value.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.“ (Matthew 11:28)
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives.” (John 14:27a)
How quickly I forget His kindness.
And yet, those compassions keep coming.
May we be okay dwelling in that needy place, accepting the Lord’s reminders of His care as He provides them in this new year.