Thoughts on January

Happy New Year everyone. It seems it was just a few years ago that we were panicking about what would happen when we crashed in to a new century and here we are 17 years in and our computers and phones are still working. We can still get in our cars and go to work or to the grocery store. We can still flip a switch and get light or turn a knob and get hot water. 



Have you ever wondered what you would do if you couldn't do those things? On these cold winter mornings when I step into the shower and just groan with the satisfaction of being doused with warm water, I think, what would I do if I couldn't take a hot shower? Maybe I would have to be satisfied with an occasional cold shower, or maybe I couldn't shower at all. I know it is such a minor thing, but in all reality it is those little things that suddenly become important once we lose them.



For me the months of January, February and even March become a long, slow walk into a gray, sunless landscape. I tend to shy away from movies or books that don't have happy endings and want to stay in the house, especially at night. The cold seems to be harder on me than when I was young growing up in Buffalo, NY. I find myself more anxious and fearful about so many what if I couldn't take a hot shower. Ha, ha.

What do your Januarys look like? Do you crawl into a warm hole and just try to wait out the winter, hoping that spring will come early? Or do you jump into a new routine of exercise, eating better and being a better person to fulfill some of those resolutions you made? Or are you like me? You just keep plodding along, never really getting any better at anything, but never really getting any worse? 

This is my true confession. There are days, in fact most days, during the winter months, where my brain feels like a wet wool sock? Got that? Wet, mushy, heavy, not good for much of anything. Please tell me I am not alone! Do you ever feel this way? Last night I could not fall asleep until after 3 in the morning. I tossed and turned, over and over. I got up to use the restroom every hour. My wet, mushy mind, was suddenly acutely alert with anxious thoughts. 

pixabay - wet muddy boots and socks

So how do I get through these times of struggle? How do I keep getting up in the gray light of dawn and move forward with another busy day of work, caring for my Grandson and trying to be a good housewife, wife and mother? 

Pixabay - gray landscape

Simply put, I do it in His strength.

1 I lift up my eyes to the hills.
From where does my help come?
2 My help comes from the Lord,
who made heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot be moved;
he who keeps you will not slumber.
4 Behold, he who keeps Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The Lord is your keeper;
the Lord is your shade on your right hand.
6 The sun shall not strike you by day,
nor the moon by night.
7 The Lord will keep you from all evil;
he will keep your life.
8 The Lord will keep
your going out and your coming in
from this time forth and forevermore.
— Psalm 121 (ESV)

I memorized this passage a few years ago and never realized how often I would come back to it. I recite it in the shower. I recite it when I am awake in the dark hours of night. I remember it when I am too tired to move another inch. I remember it when I am afraid. I remember it when I need to come back to center....His center!

Photo credit  Rebecca Trumbull

Photo credit Rebecca Trumbull

If you have been following my blog since it's beginning almost a year ago you will see a recurring theme in these faith posts. That is, my heart's desire is to always point you back to Him. You see, without Him we are nothing. Without God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, I am just dust. It was His voice that spoke this world into existence. It was His breath that breathed life into those particles made of clay and iron. It was His love that nailed His Son in the form of flesh to a rugged tree. It is for His glory that we live and breath and move and exist. 



When you, like me, struggle to not be afraid; struggle to get out of bed; struggle to not eat that cookie or that donut your sun deprived brain is so desiring, lift up your eyes to the hills....His hills. That is where your help will come.

We don't know what 2017 holds, but I am much the better, much more at peace, knowing He does not slumber or sleep and that He is my keeper!