Well, I had just about finished the "original" version of this post and my laptop decided to take over and delete everything! Guess this is a test of what I have to say and my determination to speak the truth God has revealed!
I am reading several books right now on various topics. One that I started just this morning has already reminded me of my commitment to live Christmas every day this year.
Michele Woodley's book, 4 Great Prayers to Change Your Life, has already offered nuggets of wisdom. She contends that we must praise God in and through every situation in our lives--even the hard and painful experiences. Actually, she contends those are the times we especially should praise Him! She states in Chapter 2, "We were not meant to be enslaved by worry, stress, fear, or to barely get by."
How does this tie into my theme for the year? Because of Christmas, we can be assured that God, in the human form of Jesus Christ, understands everything we are experiencing -- worry, stress, fear, suffering, doubt and, yes, even our joy. When we call out to Him - when we praise Him (think David and the Psalms) - we acknowledge the glorious truth that because of Jesus, death has been conquered and we have new life!
Yes, we may be in a hard place in our lives, but we can be assured we are not alone - never alone! Not to say God is making or even allowing the situation! Rather, regardless of what we are experiencing, God has experienced/understands/will walk with us through the experience. More than that! We have the tremendous and uspeakably wonderful assurance that God hears us and loves us.
I praise God today that He loves us so much he dared to descend from heaven to walk and live and breathe among us--why else would He even do that?! Not only that, He allowed himself to be tortured, mocked, beaten, disgraced, to demonstrate that He "gets it." Whatever "it" is in our lives, He gets it.
"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen" (Ephesians 3:20-21 KJV).
Blessings on your journey,