It’s almost time to venture out into our busy city to celebrate the end of 2012. But first, a moment to stop and write. As my friend over at Eternity wrote today, the end of one year and the start of a new one, is a good time for self-reflection.
This morning I read some wise words from John Piper. He says,
For me the end of a year is like the end of my life. And 11:59pm on December 31 is like the moment of my death. The 365 days of the year are like a miniature lifetime. And these final hours are like the last days in the hospital after the doctor has told me that the end is very near. And in these last hours, the lifetime of this year passes before my eyes, and I face the inevitable question: Did I live it well? Will Jesus Christ, the righteous judge, say “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
~ John Piper, ‘Solid Joys’ App, 31 December 2012
I was confronted and humbled as I reflected on this notion that each year is a miniature lifetime. What if my life was to end tonight? Did I live 2012 well? Was I faithful?
Yet you sweep people away in the sleep of death—
they are like the new grass of the morning:
In the morning it springs up new,
but by evening it is dry and withered.
I used to hate thinking or talking about death. It’s still not my favourite topic, but I have learned in recent years that it’s helpful to think about from time to time. Remembering I will die one day forces me to stop and think about whether the life I’m living today is of value in an eternal sense. It also challenges me (and I know this is cliché) to see each day as a gift – not something I have owing to me, but something precious bestowed upon me to use for God’s glory. As I look towards 2013, I’m not sure yet what my ‘resolutions’ will be, or if I will make any at all. But I will be seeking to see each day as a gift!
And so, in no particular order, here are ten things I’m thankful for as I come to the end of 2012.
- The opportunity to experience living with friends and the ways this blessed, challenged and refined me.
- Our fantastic holiday in Spain.
- Completing my Advent Blog in December.
- The provision of our cozy new apartment in Alexandria – with a studio for Adam and a great balcony to share with friends and family.
- Going deeper into God’s word and seeing the fulfilment of his promises through studying my first theology subject.
- A challenging, busy, great first year working at CMS. I am thankful that I like going to work most days!
- Growing in my understanding of what the Bible says about being made in God’s image as a woman.
- A whole year of no migraines for my husband – the first year this has happened since he first started getting them as a teenager.
- Challenges, adventures, joys and trials in our marriage – all of which God has used to make us more dependent on him and closer to each other.
- Deepening relationships with our church family at one1seven, Redfern.
Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.