So two thirds of 2016 have been and gone. How are you doing with those New Years resolutions?
I opted out of resolutions last January. Christmas is such a crazy time – the kitchen is never without something bubbling, baking, stewing and roasting or in various stages of decoration. There’s a constant stream of distant relatives taking up residence at Hotel du Campbell, and of course the obligatory back to back carol concerts, nativity plays, parties and “dos”. And let’s not even talk about the presents, cards and decorations the season deserves.
Come January, I just want to hide in my bed with the duvet pulled high for a month – not reflect on the past and plan for an improved future (except, of course, to vow that next Christmas I will do less, prepare earlier and be more organised).
September, however, is a different matter. For me it’s the start of the year. The vibrancy of summer is fading and will soon give way to a whole new palette of glorious colours. The children are in smart new (to them!) clothes and shiny shoes. The socks are white, pencils sharpened, hair bobbles matched.
In short, September is rich with hope and expectation. And it’s the time I like to plan my changes.
This year, there is more planning than usual. As I write, I am awaiting a phonecall that could significantly change life at Campbell Towers.
You see, for nearly eight chaotic, intense, glorious years my career has been that of full-time Mummy. Now the apron strings are stretching a little and my babies are at school, it’s time to begin a new phase.
I won’t pretend it’s not scary – how will I fit everything in? How will my babies cope? Will I still manage my daily hug quota? And does my brain actually function after all these years?
But if the phonecall brings the life-changing news, then I know it is right – it is God’s will, and He has it under control. I’m reminded of God’s word through the prophet Jeremiah, to his children in exile, and the promise still stands for us today:
11For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. (Jer29 v 11 NLT)
So go on – take a glance back at the past year, then look forward to the coming opportunities – and present your hopes, plans and fears before God. Work with Him – He is in control.