Quite frankly, I'll be glad to see the back of 2009. I made a list of the positive and negative aspects of the year in my journal yesterday and the negatives are big ones. Our extended family has been plagued by marriage problems, cancer, other health issues and disappointments. My husband's job loss in May sent us reeling and we continue to come to grips with the whole issue.
On the other hand, we have much for which to give thanks - a wonderful family, children who love the Lord and have purpose in life, each other's love, God's grace, health and much more. It takes effort to focus on the positives at times.
A year is really an artificial division of time, and yet the turning of a calendar page seems to bring with it new hope and a sense of anticipation about the future. Looking ahead can be frightening or exciting. I choose to look towards the light, placing my hope and trust in a God who loves me even when I don't feel his love or sense his presence. I will trust because to abandon my trust and give into despair is a thought too terrifying to consider.
On another blog today I read this quotation that I leave with you - a hope and a wish for 2010
"May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you're wonderful, and don't forget to make some art - write or draw or build or sing as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself." (Neil Gaiman)
(edited to add: Yes, that is my husband looking off into the distance like an intrepid explorer. This photo was taken a couple of years ago, between Christmas and New Year's, at East Sooke Park, one of our favourite places to hike.)