Another passing year, gone by like a flash of light. So it seems. The older I get the faster they seem to fly by. Yet the amount of experience, sorrow, and joy packed into each one, day by day, is astounding. And here we are again, January 1. For several years now my husband and I have had the tradition of giving each coming year a name to signify our hopes and goals for the year ahead. I’ve even gone back in time a bit and given names to some years past that have been monumental in my spiritual growth and healing.
2013 was the Year of Awakening.
This was the year that I finally came out of the coma of the psychiatric prison I spent 14 years trapped inside.
2014 was the Year of New Beginnings.
This was the year that I left the comfortable misery of the life I was living, walked away from people, places, addictions, and behaviors and never looked back. It was a year of intense heartbreak and loss, but also one of intense power and miracles.
2015 was the Year of Sacrifice.
This was the year that I learned an entirely new way of being, doing, and serving. When I became a mother in January 2015, everything in my world changed and it forced me, finally, to leave behind the selfishness of my youth. It was the year that I also became a full-time step-mother. It was the year that my current physical health struggles started to show their true ugliness. It was a year filled with many joys and many struggles.
2016 was the Year of Gold.
This was a year about refinement. It was the year that God broke us down deeply to cleanse us and syphon off the junk to reveal new beings. It was the year our teenage son battled the bulk of his cancer. The year I truly began my career. The year I faced countless health challenges. And most importantly, it was the year I came to Christ on May 22, 2016.
2017 was the Year of Godly Fruit.
It has been an equally painful and challenging year, if not more so, than 2016. But it has also been a year of incredible miracles, answered prayers, and abundance beyond measure. 2017 was a year that freed my little family from the bondage we were stuck in. It was the year that made way for us to finally begin planting roots in a new town. It brought us dear new friends and opened the door to heal several broken relationships. But it also saw the loss of many other long term relationships some due to death, some due to to conflict, some simply due to time and distance. But it’s also made way for serious healing and freedom. It was the year my husband lost a kidney after being diagnosed with cancer and (hopefully) beating it. It was a year of intense loneliness and sadness for me at times, but also one of intense joy and closeness with my husband and children. 2017 was the epitome of a beautifully tragic year.
And for 2018, we’ve dubbed it the Year of Fresh Fire.
This is the year we move forward in faith and hope. No longer dwelling in the yuck of years past. The year we let go of all the stuff holding us down, holding us back, in our hearts, minds, and physical spaces. This is the year we allow the Him to fill us completely and rule in our lives; the year we look at everything with awe and wonder and give glory to the Lord Most High for His magnificent works. This is the year that we pray without ceasing, serve without complaining, and love without exception. This is the year we stop with the excuses. The year we allow ourselves to be overcome by the fresh, refining fire and power of the Holy Spirit.
“I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance. but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire” – Matthew 3:11
So happy new year, may the peace of the Lord be with you and may you be filled with the power of His Holy Spirit Fire! In Jesus’ name, Amen!