For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, 1 Peter 2:21 (NASB)
It is once again time for me to do a review. The 48th year of my life reminded me once again of the personal cost there is to be a Christ-follower. Of course, it is nothing like the cost that was paid for my redemption but it is costly nonetheless.
This past year has made it abundantly clear that the call of the Christian life includes suffering as well as joy. Following Christ, becoming Christ-like, being identified with Christ will all bring sorrow and pain into life as I am broken and poured out. This is not always a bad thing. As I am transformed from who I once was into who I am becoming, God is glorified.
I am reminded that God did not redeem me unto salvation for me to live life as I please- to live life for myself. More than ever, this past year I have understood that I have been bought for a purpose and I have a mission ahead of me.
God has taught me much...It is a blessing to be able to see the fruit of God's teaching bear fruit in my life. By His grace, as I have suffered I have grown. By His grace, as I have grown I have reflected Him. By His grace...His grace alone.
I am a woman richly blessed! There has been much joy in this past year as well! I have a wonderful and loving husband who is all I could ever want for a sojourner through this life, he is my soul-mate and he completes me. I could not ask for a better man to share my life. He is my best friend and I would not trade him for anything or anyone. I have fantastic kids, a thriving ministry to you, and great friends and family.
Our family continues to grow in size and our ministry family also continues to grow. We are reaching more people via the blog than ever before, and our local counseling center is also expanding. All of these things are great blessings to me.
There has also been hardship and even sorrow mixed with my joy. I understand perseverance more now than I did before; I understand forbearance and forgiveness more than I did a year ago too. These are good things because the lessons learned in the classroom of suffering are what prepare us to be effective servants to our fellow man. These lessons are often very painful and break us down emotionally, physically, and spiritually. Our sufferings remove our prideful self-sufficiency and teach us the truth- without Him I can do nothing, with Him all things are possible. I have learned this is true.
So onward I go, into the last year of this decade of life! I am excited as to what it will bring and how God will enable me to glorify Him as I continue on this journey.