A New Year Promise – Hope In The Midst Of Delights and Despair

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  Jeremiah 29 v 11 ( New International Version)

I love this verse of scripture. I can’t think of a better verse to meditate upon at the start of a new year.

Many people expect Christians to have little worries or concerns. We have faith, we have hope, we pray and we serve a living Saviour. How could we possibly enter a new year with uncertainties? Do we not trust God enough? Do we have doubts? What are we afraid of?

Like everyone else, Christians have hopes and dreams, fears, disappointments, good times and bad. That’s just life. The key is keeping our eyes fixed on God and holding on to His promises. Then we can enter the New Year with hope and anticipation of what lies ahead.

20181228_143240_0001.png

When the Unexpected Happens

I was diagnosed with a rare bone disease in 2014. I already had serious autoimmune health issues but I was able to live with those with some limitations. The bone disease was a whole different story. My left femur broke in two spontaneously, followed a year later by my right femur fracturing. Then my feet and other bones soon joined in. No cure, no treatment, a progressive rare disease that doesn’t even have its own name.

I wasn’t expecting that to happen. Apart from severe pain in my left thigh, three weeks prior to the break, I had no real warning.

Would I have liked to know? The more I ponder that question the more strongly I feel that my answer is, “No. I’m so glad I hadn’t a clue”

If I had known what was to eventuate in 2014, I wouldn’t have lived my life to the fullest. I would have been waiting for that moment, planning for an event that was just going to have to take care of itself anyway. God knew it was going to happen and He knew every single detail of that moment that my leg snapped. He knew what I would need, who I would need and where I needed to be when it happened.

Seeing God in the Midst of the Unexpected

I was surrounded by evidence on that day that God had gone before and prepared a plan for me, a plan to give me hope and a future. My Aunt had just arrived in Australia from the UK for a holiday. She had recently retired as a Registered Nurse and she knew just what to do in the moment of crisis. My Cousin had also joined her on the holiday. As a strong young guy, he was able to help my husband move furniture so the paramedics could get to me upstairs. I was at home when the leg snapped and to me, that was the biggest miracle of all. We had 6 hours prior been at the International Airport picking up my Aunt and Cousin. How relieved I was that it didn’t happen there!

I really didn’t know what was to come from this event in terms of my life’s purpose. I was pretty much in and out of the hospital for the next two years having major surgeries and complications. All I could do was focus on surviving and trusting God that he would go before me every step of the way. Those two years are a bit of a blur but I do remember the amazing peace I felt at every turn. It was a peace that passed all understanding and I know God blessed me with it to sustain me.

At the end of 2016 as the New Year was approaching. I had a sense of losing purpose in my life due to my health. I was enjoying blogging but I couldn’t see anything ahead in 2017 apart from pain, more surgery, pain, repeat.

Following Where God Leads

Three weeks later, I heard that still small voice of God encouraging me to start an online support forum for people with chronic complex and rare diseases. It was concerning me that many people had such complex diseases that didn’t fit neatly into the particular box that other online support forums needed ticking. I had an overwhelming sense that chronically ill people needed a broader outlet where they could share as much or as little as they liked about their health and how it was impacting their daily lives.

So, I stepped out in faith and I started the forum on the 14th January 2017. I called it Medical Musings with Friends as an add-on to my blog. I really didn’t have a clue how I was going to reach out and find people with a genuine need to join the group.

A week later, “The Mighty” published my first article. I nearly didn’t submit the article because I felt I would probably be wasting my time.  I felt my writing wasn’t good enough.  The first submission never arrived as they had a system failure.  An email was received from the Editor, three weeks later, saying all articles submitted during certain dates must be resubmitted. That delay actually turned out to be another gift from above.

I again thought there was little point in submitting and I was about to delete the email when I suddenly felt, “oh just do it…you’ve got nothing to lose”. So I quickly decided to add my link to my online support forum and resubmitted.

That article was published the next day and resulted in over 1400 likes and countless people reading it and finding the forum.

The rest, as they say, is history.

The forum is turning two on January 14th, 2019 and has over 1600 members internationally. God knew the plans he had for me and the purpose he had for me was to reach out to others in similar situations to my own. Every little detail has been planned by His hand, not mine. The delay in my first article being published was an absolute Godsend. When I first submitted it I had no clue I would be setting up a forum.

Trusting God With Your New Year

God’s timing was perfect. God’s timing is always perfect.

Knowing God, loving God and serving God, doesn’t mean life will be without trials and tribulations. Quite often there are continuous twists and turns and spiritual battles along the way, especially when we seek to do His will.

2018 has been a year of many moments of delight and despair. That’s life. I know 2019 will also hold a mix of both experiences.

There is another verse of scripture that I hold very close to my heart, particularly when everything seems overwhelming and complicated:

“Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy” (1 Peter 4: 12-13 New King James Version)

If you are feeling concerned about the year ahead, step out in faith. God will carry you through every moment, day, week and month. You don’t need to worry about the intricate details. You just need to be in step with His plans and purpose for your life.

There’s a very fitting quote from Martin Luther King;

“You don’t have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step”

Take the First Step

I pray every day of 2019 will be full of hope and anticipation, every step of the way.

Sam xx

 

This is based on my third article written for  Blogs by Christian Women.  It is an honour to be a contributor.

I’m also a Contributor at “The Mighty”. You can check out my published articles at My Author Page

 

Please click here to read our Privacy Policy

 

12 thoughts on “A New Year Promise – Hope In The Midst Of Delights and Despair

  1. Happy and Blessed New Year Sam And family .God in His Goodness will guide us -what plan he has for All of us .You have done great planning with guidance with word of God .My life is similar to yours or more worse ,myself survivor of cancer .Now hubby with cancer Spread .It gets harder to care with your own pain .But those with Hope and Faith in the Lord knows how to do it .Blrssings Of God with you All .You know my email .May this New Year .Bring more comfort ,support from Medical Musing with Friends .Wishing All members Happy New Year .Pray All goes well with Love,Peace,Calmness And full of Endurance all those suffering -Believing “Never Give Up “the good you can do to yourself by taking it Easy ,Resting more,but believing Miracle can happen those who trust in God .As in Suffering we are more Blessed -we Medical Musing with Friends will get stronger each day .God Bless you All in this beautiful summer here in Australia .May all Members around all the countries be Blessed Always .Lots of Prayers I’m saying daily for you All to get by in your daily struggle to survive .Never Give Up .We are All here to Support you ,emotionally,mentally and spiritually .Sam is you are an encouragement to Us All .Do take it easy too on yourself first .We are Always here to support you .God Bless .May this New Year be Easy for dearest Sam and Family .Lots of Love and hugs .Anna Knight .

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You are so right! God DOES have a plan for us. And his plan is GOOD! It’s so hard to remember that when we’re experiencing tragedy. I’ve learned that I have to let my knowledge of my loving Father to interpret my present circumstances, rather than allowing my present circumstances taint my view of my loving Father. Happy New Year to you, Sam ☺️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Happy New Year, Sam! I am so glad that you took that leap of faith to become both a Mighty author and to set up our lovely facebook group – you are inspiration to so many! Maybe one of these days I will get my act together and send something to the Mighty….meanwhile I have nominated you for the Versatile blogger award and shared one of your posts on my regular “Monday Magic” feature – find details for the award here: https://painpalsblog.com/2019/01/06/old-year-new-year-and-being-a-versatile-blogger/. It would be lovely if you join in, but don’t feel you have to – either is cool! Claire x

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.