Happy New Year to you and yours, dear readers. I'm pausing to spend individual time with each child before our homeschool resumes. As I work a puzzle with them, or create a construction-paper snowman, or read aloud from a favorite novel, or play that favorite board game, I'm praying Christ's peace and strength into their souls. I pray that my failures as a mother will not define their upbringing, but that His Truth and Grace will instead.
I read Psalm 96 this morning and it dawned on me...what a great New Year's Psalm! It defines what stance our hearts and minds need to take in this tear-stricken, distracted world, so that joy and peace prevail and not despair. I think the children and I will memorize it together in the month of January and present it to Daddy as a surprise. Like the 23rd Psalm, is has the power and purpose to change a heart's stance.
I'm also praying much regarding the January start to the Children's Bible Study I'll be teaching in our home (held every Saturday afternoon). If we have it in our minds to do something for Him, we best pray continuously so that it ends up being Him, and not us doing the work. That's true whether it be Bible Study, child rearing, helping in the nursery, or making a meal for a friend.
We delivered cookies and the Jesus Storybook Bibles, along with a flyer introducing our family a little more, and our new church-sponsored Bible Study, to neighbor families on Christmas Eve. That cookie project felt enormous but when it was all done, it felt wonderful to deliver them to neighbors (and AWANA teachers). On that special night as we rang doorbells, my children got a taste of this biblical truth: It is more blessed to give than to receive.
Happy New Year!
Sing to the Lord a new song;
sing to the Lord, all the earth.
Sing to the Lord, praise his name;
proclaim his salvation day after day.
Declare his glory among the nations,
his marvelous deeds among all peoples.
For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
he is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the nations are idols,
but the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before him;
strength and glory are in his sanctuary.
Ascribe to the Lord, all you families of nations,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
bring an offering and come into his courts.
Worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness;
tremble before him, all the earth.
Say among the nations, “The Lord reigns.”
The world is firmly established, it cannot be moved;
he will judge the peoples with equity.
Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
let the sea resound, and all that is in it.
Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them;
let all the trees of the forest sing for joy.
Let all creation rejoice before the Lord, for he comes,
he comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness
and the peoples in his faithfulness.