The people walking in darkness have seen a great light. – Isaiah 9:2 (NIV)
The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. –John 1:5 (RSV)
I have no idea what I’m going to write this week. I’m tired. I’m too busy. I can’t focus. My arm hurts. I haven’t had a decent, consistent prayer time in over a month. I’m disappointed—with myself for not finishing the 50K words for NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month—I did 16,304) and with the fact that after all the hype and hope when I met with a book editor from a big publishing house in September, I didn’t get a book contract. A month after the meeting, the all-important “committee” that decides what gets published turned down my book proposal.
And my arm. About a month ago my left arm started buzzing. It’s gotten worse. The fingers on my left hand are tingly, numb, and itchy. It’s hard to type. The entire arm goes numb, then aches. Oh, how it aches! Sometimes I just want to groan. Sometimes I do. So I’ll have the surgery that was postponed last year at this time because my carpal tunnel syndrome had improved. I hope it’s soon—before Christmas so I can use the Christmas break to recuperate. Then I won’t have to miss any school. I’m having too much fun. OK, that’s one good thing I’ve written. But it’s hard to concentrate when your arm feels like a hive of angry bees is buzzing around in it.
Wednesday I did the 2011 budget. If we’re careful, we could get the credit card debt paid off by September, then the credit union loan by the end of 2011. Now, that excites me! Getting out of debt will mean we’ll be able to replace the 27-year-old roof that we’ve been talking about replacing for several years, and our two aging (1997 and 1999) vehicles. It means no more cramped, redneck porch, no more unusable door hanging on the front of the house, because when we put the roof on, we’ll also build front and back decks. Then, down the road, in the foreseeable future, new carpeting through the whole house and new living room furniture to replace what we bought in 1991. Or was it 1990?
The five-year plan I developed a couple of years ago to prepare us for retirement looks like it’s coming together. Please, Lord, let it.
Speaking of the Lord—remember my “Baker’s Dozen”? The list of 13 things I’d been praying about for years? Exactly one year later after writing that list, seven out of 13 have been answered. The deck, the roof, the new vehicle, the furniture and carpeting are in the foreseeable future. Forget the book contract.
There. I’ve reached my word limit. And here I didn’t know what I was going to write about. But what have I said?
I started with discouragement, disappointment, pain, even nigglings of despair. Somewhere along the way, the negative gave way to the positive, the discouragement and disappointment to hope.
And that’s why Jesus came: to give us hope in a hopeless world.
As I light the second Advent candle, Father God, I am reminded that the light of Hope, flickering at first, has dispelled my darkness. Thank you. Amen.
Special-Tea: Read Isaiah 9:1-7
Do you have a "Baker's Dozen" List? If not, why not list 13 things you've been praying for in a prayer journal. Open the journal and list them on the left side (the back of a page). Then, on the right side (on a fresh page), number 1 through 13, and on the top write "When and how God provided -- Jehovah Jireh. Then, write the date God answered that prayer and how. He will astound, amaze, and awe you with His answers. And make sure to let me know about it.