Earlier this year, I started a blog series intending to recap each year from my twenties. I got through 2012 and then I just…stopped.

This year has proved to be one for the books, and I’ve had a hard time sitting down and processing previous years because of all that we’ve gone through this year. It’s like unpacking for a trip. Suddenly the task of taking everything out and putting it all away just seems impossible.

So we are going to settle for one post to wrap up the decade.

I started the decade as a nineteen-year-old college student and am ending the decade as a twenty-nine-year-old woman who is a wife, dog mom, aunt, teacher, and author.

If you would’ve shown me glimpses of 2019 me to 2010 me, there would’ve been parts of this journey that would’ve thrilled me to the inmost part of my heart. And there would’ve been parts that would’ve broken my heart in a million pieces.

But God in his mercy does not do this, because he knows we could not handle it. Oddly enough, I’m reminded of a quote from “The Horse and His Boy,” by C.S. Lewis. I’ve found some touchstones lately in the Narnia series, and this one is no exception.

“Child,’ said the Lion, ‘I am telling you your story, not hers. No one is told any story but their own.”
― C.S. Lewis, The Horse and His Boy

You only get to know your story, not other people’s stories. And beyond that, God only tells you your story one day at a time, no skipping ahead to other chapters. We would either not know how to handle the victories, or we wouldn’t survive the heartbreak.

If I could sum up what I’ve learned this decade (but most definitely am still learning) it’s trusting God with those future chapters of my story.

I learned to trust Him through wonderful chapters like meeting my future husband, all the trips I would take, the excitement of publishing books, and other work opportunities.

But I also I learned to trust Him through painful chapters like the death of grandparents, broken relationships, infertility, and other heartaches.

Luckily for us, His previous bestsellers speak to His prowess as the author and finisher of our faith. More than ever, I don’t know what the future holds and I never will. But we walk with the one who does. My future chapters are safe with Him indeed.

As we close out 2019 and look ahead to 2020, I leave you with an excerpt from one of my favorite poems in “Streams in the Desert.”

“He was better to me than all my hopes;
He was better than all my fears;

He made a bridge of my broken works,
And a rainbow of my tears.

He emptied my hands of my treasured store,
And His covenant love revealed,
There was not a wound in my aching heart,
But the balm of His breath hath healed.

He guided by paths that I could not see,
By ways that I have not known;

The crooked was straight, and the rough was plain
As I followed the Lord alone.
I praise Him still for the pleasant palms,
And the water-springs by the way,
For the glowing pillar of flame by night,
And the sheltering cloud by day.

Never a watch on the dreariest halt,
But some promise of love endears;
I read from the past, that my future shall be
Far better than all my fears.

Like the golden pot, of the wilderness bread,
Laid up with the blossoming rod,
All safe in the ark, with the law of the Lord,
Is the, covenant care of my God.”

Streams in the Desert, September 25

Happy New Year from my family to yours.

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