This month marks the beginning of a new year. None of us knows what lies before us as those days are known only to God. But He asks us to go forth trusting in Him in all our days.

The wonderful thing about a new year is that it gives all of us a chance to change what we know must be changed, to leave behind what must remain in the past, to forgive where we need to forgive, to love more where we need to love more, to strengthen in ourselves what is weak and to build on what we know is good and right.

As I reflect back on the past year and sift through the days, I can see successes and I can see failures. I see times I surrendered to God and times I went my own way. I see times I had complete trust in God and times I grew faint and weak. But in all the times I never fretted that God had forsaken me.

God taught me so much from the times He brought me to the mountain top to the times He led me into the valley. I saw His continued grace and mercy in every circumstance. How many times had He lifted me up and carried me. How many times had He filled my cup. He was always patient and understanding of me and embraced and comforted me with His great love. Each year, He, as the great teacher, has taught me many lessons. I continually learn more about Him and about myself. He con-stantly grows my faith and joy in serving Him.

What joys and burdens may come to me this new year I do not know. But one thing I do know is that He is already there, ready to provide all that I need. I am so blessed to have ac-cepted Christ as my Savior, to be a child of God and know that He had and has a plan for my life. And even though the color has left my hair and the number of my years is high I know He is not, and will never be, finished with me and that my years of serving Him will never be over.

So, my friends, may God richly bless you this new year. May He protect you spiritually and physically. And may you love, serve, praise and thank Him for all He has done and continues to do for you. Happy New Year!

Submitted by Judy P