Another lap around the sun and 2016 comes to a close as we prepare for the start of a whole new again. Before I begin, I pray that you all had a very Merry Christmas and I wish you a Happy New Year!
I’ve been reflecting this morning on the goings on of 2016. There have been many good times and difficult times. Times of joy and times of trial and testing. Overall, I reflect on 2016 and what I see as the pure goodness of God reflected throughout everything. I can hardly believe the movement He has made just in my life and that of my family. Even on days where it feels like I’ve been removed, He has been there every step of the way. Unfailing love and faithfulness. Continued goodness in everything.
I’ll just start with January 31. I stood in front of our church family and Baptized my wife and our 3 children, exactly one year to the day that I nailed the stake in the ground and surrendered my life to Christ in the mountains of Colorado. I mean, wow! That’s nothing but a God thing right there. To see the movement that had taken place in that year prior, was so amazing and now to see the journey of growth in each of them has been nothing short of amazing and good.
We’ve times of trials and joy with our children this year, from the baseball field with our middle child, to our oldest graduating high school and starting college. Through all of these things we see God present. Seeing our children begin to desire a deeper relationship with God and to build relationship with peers in our church family has been huge. They take after Amber and me as very quiet and to themselves. Natural introverts and Move Aways in their styles of relating. I’ve seen God working in their hearts this year more and more and them being more respective to it. It’s been so good to see.
I see my bride and the movement in her own life. I pray daily for her to move on a parallel journey with me as a woman and bride in our desires to seek God and grow as disciples. To see her eagerness day after day to spend time with God and know him and them to talk with me almost like a kid in a candy store with such joy and excitement from all God is revealing to her as she walks with him each day. And now to see her desire to build relationships with other women continue to grow. Just immense.
I look on what God has done in my life as well and just stand in amazement. He took me out to Colorado for a 2nd time in May to unplug and spend time at the feet of older men seeking counsel over my story and setting up the coming decade to work toward becoming an integrated whole and holy man. That journey has set the stage for what is going on now. In September we launched our counseling ministry and I have been blessed with the chance to speak life into different individuals and couples. On top of that, I began to lead along with another brother and friend, a mens’ discipleship group. That’s been huge for me to finally build a band of brothers of peers to get to know, to lead, and to do life-on-life with. Thankful for these men and for the mentors and sages that also speak into my life now.
I can definitely say that I’m not the same as yesterday. I know there’s so much more ahead and can barely believe that I’m here now. 3-5 years ago, I never would have thought to have a year like this and to have a life moving the way it is. God’s hand is moving in every aspect of my life. It’s truly amazing.
I reflect on 2016 with great joy and I look to 2017 with eyes on the narrow road continuing to follow where God leads. I can already see things He is setting before me through the counseling ministry, mens’ ministry, and in my family and relationships. I move into the new year a man of hope. A dangerous hope for good. Dangerous for good.