I love writing a little list of things that I would like to accomplish at the start of each year. Sometimes I write the list out but, more often than not the list sits in my head like a dream waiting to come to life. This year I am determined to write the list down. I've read that when you write goals down and keep them in a place where you will see them often, they are more likely to come to fruition. I will save that fun little list for another post, but for now I will share a new tradition that is near and dear to my heart.
Several years ago when we still lived in Southern California, a friend of ours hosted a huge party at their house. We ate tons of good food, played lots of games, talked for hours and ate more food but, before midnight everyone came together in the living room. We turned down the lights for less distractions, let candles light the room and then we prayed together as friends. It really blessed me and I hope to carry on that tradition for years to come! I find that starting each year off with a prayer of thanksgiving for the past year's many blessings and a prayer request for the upcoming year and all the unknowns that lie ahead to be the best way of celebrating the New Year. I can think of nothing better than having a chat with the creator of the universe before stepping my feet into 2012.
My Prayer of thanks to God For 2011
Lord, first and foremost I thank you for loving me. Your love sustained me and my family this difficult year. Thank you for taking care of my husband and for giving him the strength to face each broken day. Thank you for what you have already done for him and thank you for what you will do for him yet. Thank you for being the glue in our marriage. You remind us to serve each other selflessly and to forgive each other endlessly and that is what carries us through. Thank you for my husband Lord. In spite of it all he is still my best friend and I have learned so much from him. Thank you abundantly for our darling daughter, Daisy. Every single day I find myself in awe of her. She brought me laughter and warmed my heart on so many dark days this year. You knew I would need her to press on and to keep my focus on something other than myself. She is beautiful beyond description and I am constantly growing in my understanding of your love for me as I grow in my understanding of my love for my daughter. Thank you for the miracle of life and the honor of being another human beings caretaker!
Thank you Lord for providing for us this year. Your provision spared our home and my sanity for that matter. You provided for us in so many unexpected ways; through family and friends, medical reimbursements, work, photography jobs, an old savings and in just plain miraculous ways. I stand in awe of you Lord.
Thank you Lord for my Momma. What a priceless gift you gave me in her! Her tireless encouragement and faithful ear carried me through one of the toughest years of my life. Thank you for blessing our friendship and keeping us close even in distance. Thank you for using her to remind me of your promises and your will for my life, my marriage and my family. Thank you for speaking truth through her and holding me steady. The best things in life truly cannot be bought but, you give them all freely. Thank you!
Thank you for all of my family and friends. So many gifts, words of encouragement, e-mails, blog comments of support, hugs and coffee dates. I am blessed beyond measure to have so much love in my life!
Thank you Lord for this season with my husband. As much as it pains me to endure it I know that you have been teaching, stretching and growing me in ways I never would have known otherwise. As your word states, "It was good for me to be afflicted so I might learn of your decrees." Psalm 119:17 I am clay in your hands Lord and I know that you only make beautiful things. I thank you for the beautiful work you have and are doing in me and my family.
My Prayer Requests to God for 2012
Honestly, many, many selfish things immediately come to my mind to ask of you this upcoming year ...and they always do but, as I sit here and think about the fact that selfish requests tend to only breed more selfish desires in my naturally selfish nature...I come back in a full circle and realize that what I need most in 2012 is more of you in my life Lord and much, much less of me. I need more of your patience and love so that I can give more to my husband and daughter. I need more of your strength to serve without expecting anything in return. I need more of your peace to continue on in the storm and not be swept away by fleeting and unstable emotions. I need more of your joy so that I can dance in the rain and praise you come what may. I need more of your truth to cast out the lies that try to encamp in my soul and weigh me down. I need your victory for my husband's health and for our family. I need you Lord....only you. Everything in my being tries to tell me that I need things other than you to be fulfilled and to be at peace....but, deep in my depths I absolutely know that you are the answer to everything I long for. Find me here Lord and let's rock 2012 together. In Jesus name, Amen.