The last time I wrote a blog was back on March 28 of this year. That blog was titled "How I Personally
Manage During Difficult Times". Little did I know back in March what the future months would hold for me and that the days and months would surely be way more difficult than I ever imagined.
In that March post I wrote that I managed during difficult times by praising God. That continues to be true for me today. During the long difficult days of summer with our country still in the grips of the Coronavirus, with two of my children and their families far away and with Ed's health deteriorating, the praise and worship music would be on full volume in our little house in Florida. Praising God gave us hope, joy and strength when we couldn't muster up joy, hope or strength on our own. It reassured us that even during very hard and uncertain times God was with us, God knew what we were going through, God cared and that God was in control. Bottom line is that Praising God was our life line and that in Praising Him we knew that all would be well. Ed and I often said to each other that no matter what happened...."we know how the story ends". Because I am a believer in Jesus Christ and have given my life to him I indeed "know how the story ends". I know that life on earth is not all there is, that the best is yet to come and that death is not the end of things, but rather, it is the beginning.
I have to be honest and say that even though Praising God gives me much joy, I often have to make a concerted effort to Praise Him. So often the worries, concerns and problems of life slip in and before I know it I am doing more worrying than praising. It sometimes takes a deliberate effort to praise God, but when I make that effort I feel reconnected to him and the weight of my worries, concerns and problems are lifted from me.
The Christmas season is such a wonderful and easy time to Praise God but I already find myself dreading the days immediately following Christmas. I already sense that common post Christmas feeling of "What now?" So how do we answer that question of "What now?". I think the answer is to keep on praising God and to seek Jesus even after all the lights are put away, the Christmas music has ended, the gifts are opened and the cookies have been eaten. It might take a deliberate effort on our part to keep the praise flowing but Praising Jesus is absolutely not dependent upon everything being perfect or good......far from it!!! Thankfully our Praise to Jesus is based on who Jesus is. He is the Son of God who does not change and He is the Alpha and the Omega. He indeed is worthy of all our praise no matter what is going on around us.
The year 2020 will probably be remembered as a very awful year for a whole bunch of us and I certainly hope that 2021 is a better year....but none of us can predict what the year 2021 will look like. I do know that no matter what happens...good or bad...I will be praising Jesus. I hope that during this Christmas season you will remember why we celebrate Christmas and remember that Jesus was a gift of love and redemption to us from our loving God. I hope that during the busy days right before Christmas that you will take time to spend time with Jesus....just you and Jesus all by yourselves...it truly is a very precious gift to spend time with someone you love. And after the joy of Christmas is over, when the "What nows?" are trying to move in I hope that you will answer that "What Now?" question with "What now means I get to spend more time with Jesus!". He truly is the Alpha and the Omega and is absolutely worthy of us spending time with him and giving him all our praise no matter the circumstances.
In closing I want to offer my Praise to Jesus with this Bible verse from Revelation 1;8 "I am the Alpha and the Omega, says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty."
Meredith and I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year! We are excited for what the new year will hold for Soaring Wings Ministries and we are excited about the continuing work of serving our Lord by serving the homeless. We look forward to keeping in touch with you and hope to hear from many of you during the months of 2021.
With Praise to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ,
Soaring Wings Ministries
Anita Rennells is the author of this blog. She and her husband have moved to Colorado when Ed retired and are in the process of opening a ranch to help homeless young adults.
Soaring Wings Ministries