Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013 I hate you then I love you then I love you then I hate you...then I love you

I started writing a 2013 review blog, and I have to be honest--it was terrible.  Not that I'm the most talented writer or the most enlightening communicator....but my 2013 blog was just plain depressing.  I started recounting all of the nasty things that happened and maybe a little bit of the good things here and there, and as I was editing I realized that it was very imbalanced.  How easy it is to focus on the negative!  The negative is more interesting, the negative is more entertaining, the negative is easier to remember and easier to dwell on.  Right?  So instead I decided that for the top 5 negative things that happened in 2013 I would write 3 positive things that happened or were a result of the negative thing.  Most of you know 2013 was a hard year for us in many ways.  But I want to finish 2013 not by focusing on the negative, but on our blessings.  Sometimes they were hard to see in the midst of the pain, the tears, the heartbreak, the confusion...but they were there.  As you can see right here, they were there.  Which is why I both hate and love 2013.

#5 Johnny lost his job

1. Johnny has the interview experience of a champion
2. Johnny gained the confidence to realize his potential in ministry
3. Johnny started Discover Family Church

#4 Sarah quit her job

1. Sarah's new job has less stress
2. Sarah's new job has better salary and benefits
3. Sarah's new job allows much more family and friends time

#3 Sarah and Johnny had no steady income for 3 months

1. Johnny's summer speaking engagements paid more than expected
2. Sarah, Johnny, and Arlis never went without a meal or diapers or milk
3. Sarah and Johnny's bills were paid on time every month

#2 Sarah and Johnny moved out of their house and subsequently had nowhere to live

1. Sarah, Johnny, and Arlis spent quality time with Kim and Betty
2. Sarah and Johnny have rental income from renting their home
3. Sarah and Johnny now live in the perfect little condo and are saving lots of money

#1 Sarah and Johnny lost Baby Blueberry

1. Sarah and Johnny now have valuable wisdom and experience regarding miscarriage and loss
2. Sarah and Johnny have a lot of family and friends who love them
3. Sarah and Johnny are stronger than they thought they were

I won't even pretend that these positive things were always apparent.  But what was apparent and so clear was God's grace.  We made mistakes this year...we were so disappointed in ourselves and in our circumstances, and sometimes on top of that we were criticized by others, which made that feeling even worse...but thank GOD for his grace, made perfect in our weakness as Paul so eloquently wrote in 2 Corinthians.  We most certainly were weak this year, but that weakness has positioned us for Christ to work more deeply in our family and in our ministry.  Though this year has been one of our hardest it has not left us discouraged or defeated.  Instead it has left us with confidence to walk boldly and intentionally into 2014 knowing that we can rest assuredly in God's grace.  It has left us even more determined to accomplish the goals of 2014.  I'm excited that 2013 is over, but I'm even more excited to use what we learned this year to make next year even better.  Thank you, friends, for your support and love this year.  It has meant more than you will ever know.  Happy New Year!

1 comment:

  1. So, I guess God has given me the gift to be the first to comment on such a wonderful and uplifting story. The best part of this hidden life of yours that I did not know until recently are also, the obstacles in which you have shared a mustard seed of grace and positiveness out. You know where I have been and have seen me walk into darkness and come out with a light so bright that darkness walked away from me. Hidden as I like to think, waiting to see when my light(lamp) would burn the last bit of oil... I can tell you this... still he waits. I too, have an amazing testimony or like I am honored to say, testimonies.. in which Jesus became my spirit keeper and God became my one and only. Life has a way of bringing us down but, God has a way of bringing us to our knees in the same downward position but, allowing us to see up towards the everlasting skies and promises of his kingdom. Sarah, you are an amazing and wonderful woman of God. Uniquely and wonderfully made called to purpose to revive women and people in this world to get save before judgement day comes. I trust in the Lord, that everything we have dealt with together and your journey alongside your husband: with your church; has a wonderful purpose in the kingdom of God. If there is one thing that I could end my comment with.. is that God's love, grace, mercy, and kingdom is not to little for any of us to receive. Thank you Sarah, for sharing such afflictions, joys, and testimony of bearing that cross as you found your calling with your husband. It is a beautiful demonstration of God's soverign hand and the love Jesus has for us! God bless you!