We stood under the awning, just beyond the doors of the church, exchanging pleasantries after service. Then a dear one stated, “At the end of the year I am going to make a list of everything 2020 has taken.”
I think we can all relate.
And it is ok, healthy even – to grieve, to weep, and to lament all the hard-unexpected of 2020.
There is something powerful in allowing ourselves to experience the full range of our God-given human emotions, to come face-to-face with our human frailty and our desperate need for an all-powerful God who gives us His strength when we are weak.
Still, despite all 2020 has taken – and it has taken a lot, it has also given us a few gifts. So, I encouraged my friend, and I encourage you, make a second list.
Make a list of all the sweet and surprising things 2020 has given you. And remember.
Remember how “the sweet things of life became even sweeter” – as my friend Heidi said.
Or how, as my friend Dana observed, “We learned to live life unhurried.”
Another friend, Lynae, noted how working from home gave her some unexpected freedom.
Freedom from uncomfortable shoes.
Freedom from the hassle of figuring out what to wear each day.
Freedom from rushing around with the sense that she was always late for something.
And freedom from ironing!
This telecommuting also allowed her an hour more sleep every night, which has left her feeling well rested and healthy.
For Lynae, myself, and many others, 2020 also encouraged us to get out into the glory of God’s creation every day – observing more closely the changing of the seasons, the formation of clouds, the flight pattern of local birds.
It gave us a window into the lives of our young-adult children in ways we hadn’t previously had access to. For some, 2020 gave them a greater appreciation for what’s important to their young-adult children and what they’re passionate about.
It offered opportunities for deepening our connections with our spouse, children, and community.
And 2020 gave us a deeper understanding of the challenges faced by our friends of color.
Friend, may you remember all the good the LORD had done in your life this year. May His unfailing love be your comfort. (Psalm 77:11 & 119:76)
What sweet gifts have you received in 2020? Comment below or join me on Facebook.
Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You preserve my life.Psalm 138:7a