New Year 2023. Challenges of a New Year. Struggling to Start 2023. Helping the Hurting. Hope for the Hurting.

Let Me See Through Your Eyes in 2023?

I remember the day. It was June of 1998. I was riding in the front seat of the vehicle my husband was driving, and we had just left my Grandma's funeral. We were now in the processional, a line of many other vehicles, headed to the cemetery where we could say our final good-byes to Grandma. I recall resting my hand on my pregnant belly, tears gently trickling down my cheeks, as I took in the fact that Grandma was never to meet this special little one who was growing inside me. I recall watching out the window, observing people walking on the sidewalk, driving down the road, all going about their business as usual. Didn't they know that the world should stop today? Didn't they know our worlds would never be the same? Didn't they know we had holes in our hearts that would never be filled?For whatever reason, this scene came to me today, as I was thinking about the New Year, the arrival of 2023. The year that has close to a week of it in the rearview mirror already.Because I have not felt well, I have struggled with the transition into 2023. I wanted to jump into it feet first, sprinting forward toward the many goals I have on the horizon. And yet, I feel as if I am sitting, not standing, at the starting block, waiting for my body to get enough energy to position itself for the start of the race. The problem is, the race has already begun. It's a week in already. And that frustrates me. Yet, as I was thinking of this today, and God took me back to 1998, I got some clarity. I found the ability to look outside of my body, outside of my home, outside of my goals. I opened my heart to the many people, who like me on the day of Grandma's funeral, are feeling like they're watching the world go by, without anyone noticing. Without anyone caring.My desire is to be someone who notices. Someone who cares. Someone who Jesus will use to bring comfort. Peace. Joy. I believe there are people who are struggling with the start of 2023. There are people who have recently lost loved ones, who can't seem to find a way to move forward. There are people who are dealing with their own or a loved one's illness, who are attempting to figure out how to navigate their new diagnosis. There are those who did their best to have gifts under the tree for their little ones, who now are looking at mounting bills, with little or no income on the horizon to pay them. There are those who had hoped the New Year would bring a reconciliation within their marriage, and instead, they stare into the empty eyes of someone they used to know. There are those who prayed 2023 would bring a wayward child home for the holidays, and instead they once again, found the seat at the table empty. There are many people who are sitting at the starting blocks. They were hoping the beginning of 2023 would look differently. And now, they are watching people race past them. And they wonder, why isn't the world stopping? Don't people know my world will never be the same? Don't people know that part of my heart is broken, empty? Does anyone care?My challenge for us today, is could we step out and love someone like Jesus would? (Write a note. Stop in for a visit. Drop off some food. Make a phone call.) Could we bow our heads today, and ask God to show us who that person is who needs to hear from? Who is that person who needs to be given a glimmer of hope today? That person who needs to know that someone else's world stopped today, even if for just enough time to acknowledge the pain of another.Heavenly Father, I thank you for this New Year ahead. I do not know what it has in store, but I do know that you will accomplish your will in and through it. I ask right now, would you please bring to my heart and mind someone who needs to feel your love today? Open my heart that I may see this person, see their pain, and be a friend who can provide the love and comfort they need today. Give me your eyes right now, Lord. And guide me in the way I may serve this person. AmenMay your 2023 be filled with the love of our Savior! And if you have a prayer request you would like me to add to my prayer time, please email me. I'd find it an honor to pray for you. 

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