As I think back on this past year, it was quite a year! One that I could never have predicted, filled with lots of ups and downs, twists and turns! As we spent this year on a journey, our paths were often not what we planned, but each time one door closed another was opened. We learned that part of the joy of life is living out the journey, walking through the doors that opened and not knowing what to expect is on the other side!
This year we added a new daughter to our family and a new grand dog, Louie. We added new friends and discovered new adventures that God had planned for us. We had to say goodbye to a job that I loved. When we thought we knew what was next, God had new ideas for us.
We learned about patience and taking one day at a time. I learned about letting go of control and what it means to trust God! We were led to start a non-profit to do ministry with pastors, church leaders and other non-profits, but then had to wait over six months to find out if our request for non-profit status would be accepted or not.
My word for 2017 was Peace. It was a fitting choice as it was something that I needed to search for and find as we went through the twists of this year. And the good news is I feel that God did fill me with His peace this year. While it was a year of being without an income while we worked on starting our new ministry, God still provided and I never felt stressed about finding the resources needed to pay our bills. Even as we had to take a step of faith on spending money for ministry work, God always provided and we had enough to cover our expenses.
This year has been a year of learning. Learning to run a business instead of being employed by someone else. Learning the lessons of writing and the process of getting a book published. We have had to learn to live on trust and how to humble ourselves by having to ask for money to support our ministry. Being a self-made person who has always prided myself on my independence and not needing anyone to help me, God is teaching me that this is also a form of idolatry. I have to let go of the idolatry of doing things on my own and put my trust in Him. That is harder to do than it sounds! But through it all, I have sensed God’s direction and leading in my life! I have felt closer to God than I have ever been in the past. As I blogged earlier this year, God is teaching me that He is enough.
In 2017 I expected that I would be saying goodbye to my mom as her health declined, but like the ever-ready bunny, every time we thought she was nearing the end she would rebound and be stronger than before.
As I look forward to 2018 there is much to be excited about! On December 28th we learned that our 501(c)3 application had been approved and that we should receive our official paperwork in the next couple of weeks. We have ministry trips planned for February, March and July and maybe more to be added. We have a new grandchild due the beginning of June. God has opened doors for ministry and we are trying to walk through them. We feel unqualified to do what we are being asked to do, but we know that is where God wants us to be.
There are three prayer requests that I would like to leave with you today.
First, that God would continue to use us and that we would bring glory to God in all that we do. That we would continue to be faithful to walk through the doors that God opens for us and do what He calls us to each day!
Second, that God would prepare the hearts of those we will be working with this year. That they would be open to new ideas, making changes in their lives or ministry and that God would use them in amazing ways to help bring more people into a relationship with God this year.
Third, that God will provide the resources needed for us to do the ministry He is calling us to. Stepping out into ministry means that we have to trust God and that we move forward even when we do not know where the resources will come from. Pray that God will lead us to individuals who would want to join us by praying for and supporting Potential Endeavors.
We look forward to seeing what God has planned for us in 2018. I am sure that it will be filled with unexpected joys and challenges, but I can’t wait to see what is ahead for us!