Another year is drawing to a close and though we’ve certainly walked through some trials this year God has, once again, shown us His faithfulness every step of the way. I decided that for my final blog post of the year I am going to focus on the amazing beauty He has surrounded me with this past year. Some days it seems like God just redecorates the environment to remind me how much He loves me.
This picture, for instance, made me stop in my tracks one day last January. A cross in the sky that said, “I love you so much, Nancy, that I was willing to die for you. I’ll be with you every step of the way.”
In February, we arrived home from a trip in the midst of a major blizzard. The drive from the airport was horrific and I’m pretty sure my blood pressure reached never before seen heights in the process, but the next day was like magic! Simply beautiful!
I remember this moment like it was yesterday. A couple of weeks before John’s stem cell transplant our friends, Mike and Mary, were here for dinner. Mike had offered to help out at John’s office during John’s absence. I walked into the living room for a minute and saw this sky. I love it when God adds His beautiful signature to our days.
The following picture isn’t great as pictures go, but let me tell you, there was some huge excitement when I saw this tulip. It was a rainy, dreary day and John was in the hospital with an infection. I was pulling into the Mayo Clinic parking lot when I spotted some color in the park alongside the building. When I investigated the source of the color I found this. I love tulips and, in my neighborhood at least, they don’t normally bloom until mid-May so you can imagine my surprise at seeing this on April 13! I know God just dropped that beauty into my day to remind me of His love.
I had volunteered to help at an outreach event held at a park in the Twin Cities area. I was standing on a ramp just above a bush when I noticed this bright color peeking through the leaves. I grabbed a quick picture with my phone and loved how it turned out. I honestly didn’t think about it until just this moment that this representation of new life showed up just weeks after John’s transplant was over and he was on his way to full recovery. How cool is it that I’m now able to look back on that moment and recognized it’s significance seven months later? In June I finally had time to go visit my parents and normally you’d find a picture taken at the ocean’s shore when I’ve been there to visit. But this time, this unique looking flower caught my eye as I drove past it one day. You have to admit, God is beyond creative when it comes to designing His world. Every July for the past 15 years (minus one) has included a trip to my friend, Ruth’s cabin outside of Cumberland, Wisconsin. I’ve already posted a group of pictures from that time, but seriously, it was so beautiful it deserves another look.
In August we attended a picnic at our local lake and just before it was time to go home I walked over to the edge of the lake and saw this. Lakes are peaceful places – not quite so peaceful when people are jet-skiing on them – then they are just fun places, but still not a bad place to be.
September was our “vacation” month. We flew out to Santa Fe, New Mexico to visit our college friends, Mike and Jeneane. I was mesmerized by the sky and shared a few photos on my blog in September, but I must have written it before we got to this spot. I remember glimpses of sunlight on some areas of the terrain while the rest was ensconced in clouds. Sometimes capturing the view is like trying to squeeze an elephant into a thimble. It’s just not gonna happen.
In October we were honored to attend my nephew, Taylor’s wedding in California. The wedding venue was kind of out in the middle of nowhere but wow, so worth the drive. It couldn’t have been a more perfect day or a better spot for a wedding. We had a blast! November brought us the opportunity to attend another wedding; this time our niece, Emily’s, held in northern Minnesota. It was dark when we traveled from the church to the reception but there was still enough light for me to see that it would be worth a return trip the next day. I’m so glad we took the time to do so.December was a cloudy, dreary month in Minnesota (with no snow until December 27) but I had the chance to visit my parents in California early in the month. While every day wasn’t sunny and bright out there, I still took a plethora of pictures because, as mentioned earlier, the ocean is my happy spot. So, even though I posted this on my blog earlier this month, it remains my favorite for the year. The path just seems to invite me to keep walking along the path that God has laid out for me. Along the way, He’ll know just the right time to “redecorate” and remind me not to miss the beauty of His creation.
I can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store but one thing I know for sure, God is faithful through it all. He provides beauty, strength and peace for each day. I pray you’ll seek out the beauty He has for you in the coming year.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take. Proverbs 3:5-6