2017 is almost upon us, and the sentiment that I keep on hearing is that no-one will be sorry to say goodbye to 2016.
And to be honest, looking around, it’s easy to see that the world is sore and broken and it’s no wonder that people are looking for hope from a new year.
All over the news there is sorrow, hardship, and hatred. I could mention celebrity deaths… or Syria… We stand helpless and aghast as we see such destruction and suffering.
What is it about the end of a year and the start of another that inspires hope?
The notion that things will be different.
Or just that they can’t possibly get any worse.
We make resolutions, clear up, turn over a new leaf, start afresh. I do these things, too.
This hope… will it be fulfilled?
No. And yes.
All our trying, all our striving, all our performing and fixing and improving – they don’t save us. We can’t save ourselves from ourselves. We are bent on self-destruction and only a cosmic shattering can bring us back.
Hope is Yes when we look at Jesus. He came to be with us forevermore. He knows we can’t make things right on our own. We may make some things right – but ultimately, we’re desperate. So He came to get us.
The thing I’m most grateful for this year is that this Hope has taken deep root in my heart and mind. It’s changing me.
This world is broken. There’s no denying it. But there is Hope.
From my home to yours, we wish you a year filled with grace and truth.
Here are a few of our family highlights from 2016. Enjoy.