Happy New You!

I love New Year’s Eve. It’s a cruel holiday to moms of early-risers, but I can’t resist the hope that it brings. This New Year’s Eve, as I did dishes, I thought of what I wanted to change or accomplish this year in our family. In the background, my daughter, Angelina, was singing Christmas carols. In the middle of one of my thoughts, my mind caught on her words, “We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New YOU!”

That’s so cute! I thought, …I’m going to miss it when she sings songs correctly someday. Then I finished the dishes with the song stuck in my head.

Later that night, my husband and I snuggled on our couch in front of the fire, listening to soft music. He gazed in my eyes and said, “It’s been a great year honey. So… how do you want to grow in 2008?”

Mood Killer, I thought, then said, “We have three kids under the age of five… Caring for them causes as much growth as I can take!”

But he remained resolute in his question, “Yes, you grow as a mom, but what about growing as Laurie?”

No more snuggling for you, mister, I thought, just as Angelina’s carol made another round in my mind.

…We wish you a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New YOU.

Suddenly, my edge wore off, and I felt God’s challenge for me through Gary’s words: How do you want to grow with ME this year, Laurie? How will we make it a Happy New You?

I felt giddy as I began to dream big about this year, but then exhaustion set in at the mere idea of growing in more areas than my life already demands.

The next morning, I opened my Bible to Genesis 1 and read about the original New Year: “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and darkness was on the face of the deep… and God said, ‘Let there be light.’” While I always get goosebumps picturing the universe exploding into existence out of nothing, it was the part about light that caught my attention. Each day of Creation, there is evening (darkness), followed by morning (light). It’s just like that for us as we grow. Allowing God to create new things in us as women, while living as wives and moms, can seem tiring and even bleak at first. But that didn’t stop God in His master work of Creation. As we embark into 2008, may we take hold of the dreams and growth God desires for us this year and trust Him to provide the light we need as His Creation continues in our hearts.

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