I am at that in between spot on the globe where I celebrate 2017 after and before others, kind of like the today squished between yesterday and tomorrow—or the calm before the storm.

It has been an amazing year. I have no idea what is ahead, but I am thankful for all that has been. I’ve seen the dream of my childhood fulfilled through the publication of my book, enjoyed amazing times with friends and family, and experienced God’s grace and healings for a variety of issues, most recently my back and my right hand.

I’ve had ups and downs—just like you. But I hope that you, with me, have experienced the wonderful comfort and peace of being safe in the Lord who is our joy and hope.

Based on past experience, I don’t expect next year to be much different from this year. There will be achievements, answered prayers, personal battles, disappointments, losses and concerns. There will be health and struggles to achieve health; rewarding work and those mundane moments when adventure sounds really good. I suppose we will also look at what is happening in the rest of the world and wonder, ‘what is the world coming to?’.

I recall as a child, playing under the kitchen table with some toys while my parents sat over coffee with good friends. There was deep concern in their voices as they discussed apparently weighty matters. At one point, I think it was my father, who seemed distressed as he wondered what kind of world he was passing on to his daughter—me. They all agreed that the world was a much more dangerous place than in their childhoods.

Small child that I was, I remember stopping from my play and considering their words. I quickly returned to my play though. I had decided the world was just fine. And for me, at that moment, it was.

There is so much that we have  no control over. What is the point worrying about it? I cannot control the rest of the world. Even in my own life, my control is somewhat limited. During a chat with a friend earlier this evening, we agreed, what is the point of making a resolution that will be quickly broken? We both have so many areas in our lives that we need to work on. Interestingly, her goal dovetailed with me. “I can change when I rest and get more sleep.” And that I could definitely agree with. I do NOT get to bed when I should, letting myself get distracted with Facebook posts, one more chapter in a new book, or just one more news video clip.

So as this year ends and a new one begins, I will seek HIS strength to take better care of myself, and I will lift you, my precious friends and family, up in prayer to Him. May you be blessed with a New Year filled with opportunity, growth, maturing in faith, and a deeper more restful walk with our Lord and Savior.

May you truly have, not a happy New Year, but a Joyful New Year, because the Joy of the Lord is our strength ([biblegateway passage=”Nehemiah 8:10″]).