I could write the usual.
One word for the year like consistency or faith.
Or I could write about a new idea I heard recently by Mary DeMuth. She suggested finding a picture that would define your resolutions.
Rather than the new resolutions, I could tell you of how I failed with the ones I attempted last year. Sorry, Mary Ann, I didn’t master the chop-stix even with the million beginner ones you sent. I have this hang up: I have to eat Chinese food to use chop-stix. So, I didn’t practice much. Only when Mike cooked. (That’s code for “we got Chinese take-out.”) I’m still scared of them. There is always another year to persevere, and thankfully I have forks. (Smile.)
As I was praying about writing this New Year post, my Bible was open next to the lap-top. A Scripture heading caught my eye: The Disciples Grief Will Turn to Joy. These words resonated in my spirit. Grief Will Turn to Joy.
Boy. The world could sure use that these days.
In this particular scripture, Jesus was preparing His disciples for His death and resurrection. No matter how He told them, His death was going to be a shock and cause great despair despite His promise to return.
Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy. In that day you will no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name….Ask and you will receive and your joy will be complete (John 16:22-24).
Their minds could not imagine the grief nor the joy they would experience.
This painting by the Swiss painter Eugene Burnand captures their excitement and expectation on the morning of the resurrection like none I’ve seen. I spotted it once in our local Christian bookstore, and Mary DeMuth had it as one of her possible pictures for the year. I think I’m going to adopt it as mine. This is my New Year’s resolution:
Expectation. I want to live expectantly. Not in the past. Not focused on the problems of the present. But eyes focused on the promises of God.
Want to join me?
What does this painting say to you?
Much grace and peace,