Strength of My Heart
Okay, my imagination or has the month of January 2022 actually turned out to be THREE months rolled into one? The longest 31-day span in history, I believe. Time has stood still and perhaps not in a good way this month. A month of cold, a month of sickness, a month of sameness if you watch the news. Where we live in America’s Midwest, the days are gray, and there’s a shortage of daylight in any January, but somehow especially in this past month.
How did you cope with the brutal month of January?
In our family, eight people were sick this past month. Some were “officially” diagnosed, some (like myself) were just sick with weird exhaustion and cold-symptoms. My friends have been sick, and their families also. Depression and anxiety are everywhere. Cold and flu symptoms linger like the long, boring days of January. How many bottles of DayQuil did your family go through in January 2022?
I made pails and pails and kettles and cauldrons of chicken soup and chili for our family and also to deliver around the circle. Soup helps, doesn’t it? All the preparing, the chopping and seasoning and taste testing. All the sharing and caring. And the consuming of the soup with a crusty roll slathered in butter. Soup is one of the bright spots of January 2022.
I sent out ALL of my get-well cards. Little bits of encouragement and hope, spreading a little sunshine through the dreariness of these days. It’s always good to reach out and send a little cheer, a little text message, or a cute picture through the cyber channels. Wasn’t it sweet this month to just pick up the phone and actually CALL a friend, to hear a friendly voice and laugh a little about it all?
God was with us in January 2022. He promised He would stay close and He always keeps His promises. God is faithful, isn’t he? The psalmist reminded us this month that even though we get a little embittered, a little brutish and ignorant in these cold, dark days, God is continually with us, He holds our right hand. He guides us through the shadows through the power of His Holy Spirit of wise counsel. And even when we lose a loved one as I did this month, I know that the Lord has received her into glory. Psalm 73 goes on like this: “Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”
Raise your hand if your flesh and heart failed sometime this past month. It’s been a rough one for real. Some of us live in hostile homes. Some of us suffer the wounds of abuse even after all these years. We have sadness and anger that our children have turned against us and believe the lies of our perpetrator. We have spent hundreds of dollars on counseling and shopped til we dropped to numb the pain of separation and loss and grief.
And yet we are still here, complete with heart beats, breath and brain waves. Isn’t it truly a miracle, this great love of Jesus? We think of His grace and His mercy, how we could have been completely shut out from His provision and His promises … But God, so rich in mercy sent His only Son to pay the price for our sins, and it was a terrible price there on the cross. All for love. All for me. All for you.
Have you received the great love of Jesus? He is our only hope in these days. For all days. Even January days.