Sonrise -Dec. 31

Photo credit: Ryan Cheney

Photo: Robert Cheney (Click to view artist’s Sunrise over Owens Valley collection)

2017 was quite the year of tests and trials for me and my family. We spent lots of time in the valley trying to figure out how to get back to higher ground. Our natural minds could not reason out every aspect of our situations. Each problem connected to another one. Even when one was solved, we were overtaken by the next.

Yet, we rejoice in victory! Our faith is strengthened by the miles. Our weaknesses are made less burdensome by the empowering faith from lifting the last rock or jumping the previous hurdle. Our confidence is renewed by God’s faithfulness. His word has flown like a banner before every battle we’ve faced. Praise God! We never fought alone. Our victory is in Him!

I am not vain enough to believe that we are the only family that has endured hardships this year. There may be families who did not have to work through physical healing, broken down vehicles, or financial losses, but there are families who grieved through the loss of parents, mental exhaustion, and the uncertainty of employment opportunities. This knowledge gives peace to our hearts, because we know that the trials common to man are not personal against us. Even when we have differences, the frailties of the human condition touch us all. All of this is for the working and perfection of our faith. Together with Christ, we shall all prevail!

This is good news. The best news! The hope through faith that next year we will be equipped to face whatever else comes our way. More is sure to come. That is suffering that comes with living in the world. Better still…we do not have to face these things alone! Serving along side of our brothers and sisters, we have both the spiritual and natural encouragement that remaining steadfast in our commitment brings glory to the one who never leaves us.

Peace be unto you all!

Great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:23