The {New} New Year

“May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ” (2 Thessalonians 3:5 ESV).

This is the verse I keep coming back to after a long, emotionally stressful and physically demanding summer.

Over the last few months I learned that adrenaline is effective only as long as I don’t sit down, that the iPad is a less than ideal but functional babysitter, and that emotions are amplified a thousand times when expressed or interpreted under pressure.

I’m so glad it’s over!

The other day I read a post – I wish I could remember where – by a guy who thought of Fall as the real New Year’s Day, the launch of all things new and possible.

I whole heartedly embrace this idea and officially declare a new beginning!

I never again want to experience a season like I did this summer. Not because of the circumstances – because I’m sure those will come up again – but because of how I walked through it. Reflecting back on the summer, I see how my heart was directed toward so many things other than toward the love of God and the steadfastness of Christ.

Instead, my heart was directed toward formulating the perfectly worded email, making the budget work despite all our expenses, and relying on my lists and calendar to keep me sane. These things are important for good stewardship, but none of it will bring me peace and rest like a heart directed toward the steadfastness of Christ.

Fall brings back a natural rhythm to our lives and provides an opportunity to reset priorities. I’ve never been more excited to see 6am than I was this week when I sat down in my favorite chair to read my Bible, alone in a quiet apartment, watching the sun rise.

Thank you, Jesus, for new beginnings.

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