“Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing."
- James 1:2-4
We're all anxious for a fresh start after the struggles and losses of 2020, aren't we?
Some of us are broken-hearted over the loss of family members and friends to Covid-19, as well as to other diseases. Some of us are beyond dismayed at the loss of jobs and of support people at the workplace, and some are absolutely devastated, having lost everything built throughout the span of a lifetime.
As the verse above reveals, we have grown in the face of enormously difficult circumstances, learning and attempting to take mini-steps of trust. Many people have shared with me how their hunger for Scripture has deepened this past year. Many have embraced earnest prayer as a daily routine. Others say they would not trade this Covid-19-saturated year for anything. Why? Because they have experienced the presence of our Lord Jesus at every turn and come to depend wholly on Him.
I've been thinking: what if we could carry what we've learned into 2021? If so, would patience and compassion rise and rule? And, yes, trust, that most challenging of characteristics. When we can't see the future no matter how hard we try—through the dense fog of Covid-19 or any other formidable crisis—who can we turn to? Who do we most trust to lead us through the haze and maze of it all?
Isaiah 26:3-4 presents the resounding answer, actually a gift for the New Year and each new morning: "You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, all whose thoughts are fixed on You! Trust in the LORD always, for the LORD God is the eternal Rock."
I am so thankful for that Rock!
Abundant joy for the New Year,
Valentine's Giveaway from Amish Cheer! Many of you have requested new Amish Cheer cards for the New Year. So, I'm offering 2 FREE Valentine cards (your choice from the NEW "Valentine Barnyard" cards) with one or more other orders of 5-pack purchases, including the NEW "Hearts Bouquet" card. This offer is good January 1 through February 7, 2021. Order here: www.amishcheer.com
My revisions for The Beginning, releasing in September 2021, are nearly complete now, and I'll begin brainstorming my 2022 novel next month. Both are stand-alone novels set in Lancaster County's Amish farmland. The Beginning takes place in beloved Hickory Hollow, featuring Ella Mae Zook (the Wise Woman, as you may recall).