Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!

As I write, it is about three hours until the New Year. Tonight we ate a delicious crab and cream cheese wan-ton (sp??) dinner, I sat down with a delicious cuppachino (sp?) to watch "Jane Eyre" with my sisters and mamma, and then I wrote half a post, clicked on a link to check to make sure it was right, and lost all that I had written. So now I am rewriting it! :-P (It will give me a chance to rethink and reword what I was going to say; perhaps the Lord wanted to remind me of something else to share or a better way to share it. Even something so small as losing a post you wrote can be used to bring God glory. There can be no greater joy. So here I go.)

I am sitting in our dining room, listening to Bethany play her violin and Mommy checking out the new laptop we just got her for a late Christmas present. It is dark in this room, but light is coming in from the adjoining living room. It's very lovely and peaceful and good for reflection. It is good for me to quiet my heart and reflect.

As I think of the new year coming, I cannot help but feel a bit of dread about it. I may sound a little fatalistic-- I do worry about what will happen to my country, and thereby to my family, my dear friends, and myself. Even in my selfishness I think, "What about my writing career? What about marrying? Having kids? Having a sweet, lovely little family out in the country, attending Heritage every Sunday, having people over during the week, enjoying visits with my sisters and their families....?" (The list goes on.)

Then the Holy Spirit whispers in my heart: "Take therefore no thought [do not be anxious] or the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself."

Allow me to share part of an Instant Messenger conversation I had with one of my best friends today. It is a little edited to avoid the confusion of several messages going on at the same time. This is the jist of it.

L: "Wow! How exciting it is that there is a whole year ahead of us!"
Me: "Well, I'm a little scared of it. But we'll see what the Lord has in store."
L: "You are? If you are, then so am I. Why are you scared?"
Me (here's the confession): (well, in short I said Obama-- Juli, you'll understand! :-) I won't say what I called him though.)
L: "Me too."
Me: "It's hard not to know what's going to happen."
L: "But-- not to be light-- our God is in control. We should pray for each other, to take each day as it comes and not to be afraid of what happens..."
Me: "and be diligent in growing closer to God NOW, not waiting 'til then..."
L: "'Cause all we can do is be secured in Christ!"
Me: "And He's more powerful than 1,000 Obamas, so we are safe in Him, with Him on our side."

Then I shared the verse I had been memorizing, in Psalms, about the Lord being on our side-- what can man do to us? We are children of God, secure in Him, sealed by Him... yes, we know all that. But even better than that, who IS God?

"This high rock, eternity, He is,
The Maker of the sky and sea, He is.
He is, and through Him all things came to be,
The one whose breath gave life to me,
Creator of the galaxies, He is, Jesus is...

Almighty God, the great "I Am", He is
The prince of peace, the spotless Lamb, He is.
He is our counsellor, eternal friend
Beyond what we can comprehend
The Word made flesh and here to dwell, He is,

He is the loving hand that formed me
And fills my heart with song,
The voice that stirs inside me
When all hope is gone;
The morning star that guides me,
The light that glows before me,
The one whose praise is on my lips, He is,

The One who died to set me free He is,
When no one else is there for me He is,
He is the same tomorrow as today
The life, the truth, the only way
The one who paid the price to make me His, He is,

He is the loving hand that formed me
And fills my heart with song
The voice that stirs inside me when all hope is gone
The morning star the guides me
The light that glows before me,
The one whose praise is on my lips He is,

He is the first and last, the cornerstone He is,
King of kings and Lord of lords he is,
He is the mighty God!"


Funny, just as I wrote "Who IS God?" this song came on (I was listening to music) and it was so appropriate that I impromptu-ly decided to record the words. (I'm afraid I can't tell you the author, publisher, or anything, but it is sung by Kevin Inafuku on his new CD "He Is" .) In any case, I had been going to elaborate in my own words the greatness and dependability of our everlasting, all-knowing God, but instead I'll have you read and re-read that song and realize for yourself that with this God, we need fear nothing. HE IS in control! :-D

I suppose a New Year's post can't go by without stating my resolutions, or at least talking about it a little. I don't necessarily hold to what they call "New Year's Resolutions", as anyone can "resolve" to do something and never go through with it. I will state my New Year's Wish, though-- my Prayer. That God would ever increasing make me like Him; that "Melanie" would decrease in people's eyes and that God in Melanie may increase more and more, shining to the dark world through me, as a light shines in a lantern. That the things of this world would grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace. That He would indeed be my all.

Some more material things I wish for in this new year are
* To memorize much more Scripture. This was my wish last year, and I am ashamed to say I didn't follow through with it faithfully until November. I particularly wish to memorize Psalm 147, Revelation 1-5, and Revelation 21-22-- and much more, by God's grace!
* To finish and possibly work towards publishing one of my books. That also has been a desire for several New Years. I hope this year I can follow through with it. We'll see how it goes! :-)
* To continue to grow in domestic abilities to be a suitable wife, in God's time, but even more to develop the Godly character that a wife and mother ought to have. One doesn't automatically become an angel and a perfect housekeeper and a delightful person to live with the day she gets married. It must be cultivated in the single years. So that is what I want to do.

Feel free to share your thoughts on the new year and perhaps your own resolutions or prayers for the New Year. I love to hear from you all. You are all very dear to me and I pray that this New Year would be one in which you would also continually draw closer to our precious Lord and see Him display His power and glory in Your life.

Happy New Year!

"For this God is our God for ever and ever:
he will be our guide even unto death."
Psa 48:14
P.S. Sorry for such a loooong post! I felt a little ramblingish tonight. :-)
P.S.S. Now only an hour and a half til 2009! When you all read this it will already be 2009! :-P

11 comments:

Leahna said...

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

Dearest Melanie, I am so thankful to have you for my friend! I think I went the whole other way in NOT making any concrete "resolutions", but I do have so many thoughts and desires for this coming year, and I hope God will conform them to His desires and goals for me that I may grow this year in His likeness. Thanks for the post, very good thoughts and very encouraging!


Not sure if you are on the computer today, but if you could have Bethy-she said I can call her that- send me the email address for the Anderson blog...pretty please

Leahna said...

Did you stay up to midnight??

:D

Melanie said...

No, I went to bed about a half hour til, but was still awake when it reached midnight. :-)

Are you wanting an invite to the family blog?

Melanie said...

Ooooh! I see what you mean-- I just read the comments conversatoin on your blog. The address is franswa@suite224.net.

Leah said...

Happy New Year to you dearest Melanie! What a wonderful post! :) I will be praying for you. I pray that the Lord would give you persistence to memorize verses. :) I know I struggle with that one. I do fear for our country as well. But if it comes down to life and death, "For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain." Your conversation with your friend really helped me to put things into perspective. Obama is only a man! Thanks again Melanie. :)

with love in Christ Jesus Our Lord,
Leah

Melanie said...

Dear Leah,

Thank you for your sweet comment and for your prayers! :-)

Teddy said...

This is so cool! Both you and "Marie" have posted about things the Lord has been taking me through...AWSOME! And then Leah hit the nose on the button with "For me to live is Christ", I've been contemplating that verse and how it should be lived out in my life. I have a John Macarthur daily book where the last days of December were spent in applying that passage.
Isn't God good? He gives comfort, assurance, and encouragement right when we need it most!!!!

Melanie said...

Teddy, that is so neat how the Lord worked that out. That is a great blessing to me! After I published that post, I was wondering if it was too melancholy or pessamistic, but now I am happy the Lord gave it to me because of your (pl.) comment(s). God IS so good!

Tory said...

Thank you for that comment Melanie! I too have been thinking about our nation and I have become a little depressed about it. But I am so thankful that we can trust God in every circumstance no matter how bad it looks to us. Thanks also for the song, it has a wonderful messsage!

juli said...

Yes! Perfectly understood Melanie! He's a real fruitcake!
I always get behind on your posts! :(

rosebud said...

Good post, Melanie--everybody else has already said everything else. =)