People asked me in church today: “How was my Christmas?” I spent time with family and friends and appreciated the time to connect with old friends and new.
Two moments that were memorable for me were being asked to say the grace before the Christmas meal. I’m sitting with the young people trapped behind the picture windows. But the young people are not little kids any longer. They are young adult men and women in the process of dating and finding their lifelong mates. Church is not a priority but I believe this was a moment to introduce them to a God who wants them to find a purpose in life that will make them happy and respected.
So my spontaneous prayer can best be paraphrased: “Thank you Lord for bringing us all around this table to renew our friendships. We are grateful to our hosts for bringing us together for this delicious feast. May your love for us continue to grow in our hearts. May we realize that we are never alone for you listen to all our concerns. May our gift to one another be our hands and hearts willing to help each other in our time of need.”
As one family member pointed out to me after the desserts, in which I ate too many cookies. What our young people need is not pious words but a genuine invitation that says: “when you’re ready” God invites you to join a faith community that lives the true meaning of peace and happiness. That’s my prayer now for all of you as we begin another new year.
My second memorable moment is the image I have posted on this Sonshine. After hundreds of hours of work, clearing trails and cleaning hundreds of years of debris, we took our special friends for a Christmas “gator ride”
through the snowy trails and over the creek into the land of make-believe.
After another hectic year of being busy, shopping, decorating and wrapping.
Now might be a moment for you to lean back and let the beauty of God’s landscape take hold of you and revive your drooping spirit.
As you reflect on this image, let your heart pray this psalm over and over again: “Into your hand I commit my spirit; you have redeemed me, O Lord, faithful God.” (Psalm 31:5).
Lord, I pray for all my Sonshine Friends in this New Year that we learn to lean on you more often. Help us to discover the truth that you simply want us to be at peace and assured of you ongoing love that give us strength and courage.