Auld Lang Syne.

((from Natalie))

Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and never brought to mind?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot,
and auld lang syne?

It’s time to raise a glass to 2017 and welcome the New Year.  Let us pause to reflect and consider: What is worth remembering?  What is best forgotten?

In the book of Job, there’s such reflecting:

Oh, for the days when I was in my prime,
    when God’s intimate friendship blessed my house,
when the Almighty was still with me
    and my children were around me,
when my path was drenched with cream
    and the rock poured out for me streams of olive oil.”
Job 29:4-6


Perhaps not all would agree, but to me that’s a full picture of goodness: intimate friendship with God, children around me, abundance.

So I raise my glass and look there. Remembering how 2017 was marked by friendship with God through: blessing of church, growth in His Word, the closeness of peace when I faced trial. 

For auld lang syne, my dear,
for auld lang syne,
we’ll take a cup of kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.

And surely you’ll buy your pint cup!
and surely I’ll buy mine!
And we’ll take a cup o’ kindness yet,
for auld lang syne.

Oh kindness, sweet kindness, a blessing indeed. Hurts were found and experienced… yes,  through the days of twenty-seventeen, but let’s leave them there in the days of past.  Let’s fill our bags for the journey into a New Year with memories of the year’s kindness.

 Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:31-32

We two have run about the slopes,
and picked the daisies fine;
But we’ve wandered many a weary foot,
since auld lang syne.

We two have paddled in the stream,
from morning sun till dine;
But seas between us broad have roared
since auld lang syne.

Time to drop the memories of weary wandering.  Time to reconnect in friendship to the Jesus who was with you through it all. Time to close the gap that sits between. Time to look forward to the new, anticipating what He has in store:

 “Forget the former things;
do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland.”
Isaiah 43:18-19

And there’s a hand my trusty friend!
And give me a hand o’ thine!
And we’ll take a right good-will draught,
for auld lang syne.

So I hopefully embrace the coming New Year.  I pray for His closeness to reign again. He is my highlight of the year gone by, He is my Hope for the days ahead. I raise my glass to the One who in His loving friendship said:

“For I am the LORD your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.” Isaiah 41:13

Our editor and leader, Kate, has encouraged us to pick a ‘one thing’ to mark the year, a highlight for the year. Undoubtedly, the highlight for me would be the answer to the prayer of my very first post for Hope is Hard. I had BIG HOPES and crying pleas for the growth of our family.  God delivered in His timing, in His way – far exceeding what I could have ever conceived of on my own.  This new baby, this sweet little girl that we so fortunately added to our family is the marked JOY of the year; and we wave the banner of God over it all.

He is good.

We have also been charged with looking ahead with a ‘one Hope’ – a hopeful claim to be a goal over the coming year. Mine is that God will squeeze the thread of Himself ever tighter, pulling the strands of my partner and me closer together in the next year.  My husband and I have set a specific date goal to make room for that to happen.  God has drawn us closer in marriage through the decade gone by, He will continue to do so.

He is good.

Hopers, how are you looking back today and seeing that He is good?  Where will you look for His goodness to come as you raise a hopeful glass to the coming twenty-eighteen?

Cheers, my friends.

Natalie Lundstrom

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