While I’m wrapping gifts this morning in my pajamas, grateful for a day off work, I’m remembering a lot about this crazy year.
Many people think of 2020 as a horrible year—and while I agree that it was difficult, I also have to say it was one of the best years of my life.
I got to watch God do a lot this year.
2020 had my children and I leaving our home, friends, church, schools, and community for a place we’d never lived before, all the way on the east coast. But it also had us getting to know new friends, find a beautiful church, and see God provide for a good school.
2020 had me as a single mom without a job. But it also showed me how God could help me build a growing business, learn about marketing, and hire employees to help me accomplish more than one person can do.
2020 had Covid-19 hit the country soon after we moved. But it also had me even more grateful for the continuing health of my children.
2020 spun us into loneliness as the virus hit hard. But it also taught us endurance, that better days come, and that, if we’re patient, life brings the people and places we need.
2020 had me unsure of how to manage a growing business. But it also showed me (again) that I could trust God for all my needs as He let me meet a girl at my favorite coffee shop who needed a job and ended up being a fantastic employee.
2020 brought opportunity for my children to learn that they are not victims; they are responsible for all life choices—and what they choose really matters. I got to watch them struggle, then do massive turn arounds for the better. I got to watch life lessons go deep—really, really deep.
2020 brought opportunity for my children not to compare with others, but to get to work to build the life they want.
I could go on about all that God has brought us through. What I want us to see is that there will always be trials and God doesn’t always remove them. Sometimes they even get worse. People die, people betray you, Covid hits hard—but just as light always dispels darkness, so God’s goodness is much more powerful than anything bad that can happen in this world.
When we open our hearts to receive eternal Goodness, no earthly evil (or the affects of it) have actual power over us. Difficult circumstances will bring us to tears but they will not bring us to despair.
Supernatural joy is a free gift and is very different than circumstantial happiness. One is contingent on everything going “right”; the other is a constant gift from the God of heaven even when things don’t go right.
Remember that sorrow is not in opposition to joy. Rather, God gives peace and supernatural joy in the midst of sorrow. Sorrow is nothing to be afraid of—Jesus Himself was called “ a man of Sorrows, and acquainted with grief.” (Isaiah 53:3)
When you know the God of heaven, He will deliver you from hopelessness and despair. He will lift you up and allow you to grow from things that would otherwise damage you permanently.
He is God.
He rules and reigns. Because of Jesus, love, joy, and peace reign over despair, hopelessness, and pain.
Someday, all sin and the affects of it will be overtaken with the glorious return of our risen Savior, Who first came to this earth as a babe, born in the manger in Bethlehem. He who was God came to be human so we could learn from Him how to navigate life.
2020 may have been a season of mourning for many of us, but if we keep our eyes on Jesus, 2020 can lead us deeper into a life of joy.
For the Christ of Christmas,