Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Great in '08

It's hard to believe today is the final day in 2008! It seems like just yesterday when Y2K was the latest talk. Time does tick by rather quickly, but this morning I'd like to pause and look back at the last 366 days.

The year started out well on the Beran farm as we celebrated our little Peanut's first birthday and then our oldest turned 5 shortly after. Fun times and celebrations continued as the days went by. We've hosted birthday parties on the "home farm," laughed a lot and smiled too as we've enjoyed many exciting times. We've also been blessed with great memories of time with friends, family and neighbors.

We've also been blessed away from home with a great church family - one who supports, encourages and loves. Our Pastor truly cares for his flock and feeds us weekly with wonderful messages from the Word. MOPS has been a great opportunity for me to connect with other Moms and a chance to share my faith as well. It's been rewarding to watch our kids grow in their faith as well as the oldest two love Sunday school, enjoyed this summer's VBS and Awana's is now a highlight of J.D.'s week.

There have been plenty of wonderful memories, but 2008 was not always great. We have watched and supported dear friends struggle with their teenage daughter. Loved ones have been informed of major illnesses and the economy has everyone thinking about finances. In August we had a miscarriage, which still leaves a bit of emptiness today and in November we said good-bye to my grandma.

The year has included some hard times, but the biggest challenges were when I was misunderstood because of my faith. At times it was loved ones I grew up with and that hurt the most. These people have said I've changed, but as God draws me more and more out of my comfort zone for the first time I've really tried to explain the reason for the change. It can be discouraging because most of the time it seems they don't want to understand. It hurts to know they could have what I do.

Really that is what is great about '08! The memories are nice, but God and my faith are what has been great!! The miscarriage was one of the hardest things I've ever experienced, but He carried me thru and actually has made me stronger and drawn me closer to Him. He is a God who keeps His promises and because of that I look forward to 2009.

Though I know it will bring hard times and things I don't expect He has proven faithful and I'm confident He will be fine in '09!!

Happy New Year to you! May God bless you and draw you closer in the days ahead!!

3 comments:

  1. Oh Jill-that is so great!! It is what we gain in Christ that makes reflecting on 2008 so great. This is the first year in many that I can reflect back without regret. I am praying you find many more blessings in 2009 and that you keep growing in your God!!

    You have been an inspiration to us this past year!

    In His Graces~Pamela

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  2. Oh Jill... I am so thankful that you are able to still say "great in 08". Things have been up and down for many of us... but God is always the same.

    The thing that thrills me beyond words is that God uses all of the things to bring us closer to Him. Things have been tough for us this past year... but my relationship with Him has been quite a journey.

    Praying blessings over you and your family for 2009.
    Lynn

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  3. Jill,
    Thanks for visiting my blog and commenting. It's always nice to "meet" new people through our blogs.
    I also enjoyed your reflections for the year.
    In HIM,
    Amber

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