Sunday, January 1, 2012

A New Year, New Adventures

Happy New Year of 2012!!! Hard to believe that another year is upon us.

I must admit that I wasn’t too sad to see 2011 leave. It’s interesting reflecting on this past year and all that occurred and also what my expectations were going into 2011. I was very excited about 2011 and all that it held. But sadly, it took a turn and went in a completely different direction than I was anticipating. And so it turned into a year of confusion, frustration, tears, and crying out to God asking Him what it was that He even asked of me. What did He want me to do?


And for a while, He was silent. He kept reminding me that He was with me and that He was working but He didn’t answer my questions. Instead, He showed me how much I was loved. Through scripture, friends, and prayer. Looking back, He never left me even when He felt distant.  I continued to seek Him and His plan for my life and future and He eventually lead me in the direction He desired.


In August 2011, I knew without a doubt that God was once again leading me to China. This is something that caught me a little off guard as I always knew I wanted to return to the overseas mission field but really didn’t think it would be so soon. But once again, God plans are so much better than my own. And through my confusion, He gave me clarity. From the time I knew I was going to China again, I felt life and purpose return. And even though it is still a constant struggle, I know a huge reason as to why my plans didn’t work out, is because God had a  different one. One that could not be fulfilled on the current path I was on.  Not that my path was bad, but God had a better one. But in order for me to be obedient and follow that plan, He had to remove some things from my life. And to have me fully trust Him with my future and my life.


Sunrises and sunsets have become very special to me over the last 3 years. God always gives me a beautiful sunrise or sunset right when I need it. They remind me of His love and His faithfulness. And how yes, He has a great plan for my life. When we are in the middle of the storm, it’s hard to see the sunlight. But there is hope and there is joy.

I live in western NY, where it usually snows in November and stays through March (if not longer). I am not a fan of the snow or the cold. We have had a very unusual winter this year. Only snowed twice (although we are expecting 1 1/2 to 2 feet in the next 48 hours, so….). And it is usually cloudy. However, I have seen more sunrises during the month of December than I ever thought possible for that month. And each time, I hear God whispering “I am with you, Anneli. Always.”


I’m excited for 2012 and the upcoming journey the Lord has me on. I know it will be full of challenges but also full of excitement and adventures. I can’t wait to move back to China in early March. I want this to be a year full of joy. Full of remembering God’s love and faithfulness and doing His will. I want to trust Him fully with my life. He knows my wants and desires and I know He will fulfill them when the time is right. He is never early, or late, but always right on time. Praise God for that! Praying blessings and joy for you in this new year of 2012. May you be a light for Him!


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