Tuesday, 3 January 2017

Joyful Memories 2016

'Joy to the world' is the vein of thought I was trying to present during December 2016 in my Search the Word Facebook page. There was so much joy surrounding the first coming of Jesus into this world when He was born as a Baby in Bethlehem....Mary, angels, shepherds, wise men, and many others rejoiced and praised God. One night in particular after meditating on the joy and praise to God, I went to bed and fell asleep just naming out so many things before the Lord for which I am thankful and praising Him for them. Some of these are just ordinary everyday things that I so often take for granted. I do encourage Christians to take time to rejoice and thank the Lord for all the good things we have, despite the fact that there are so many terrible and fearful things happening in the world.

As I look back over 2016 there is so much I can be joyful about and praise God for: big things, little things, physical and spiritual blessings, temporal and eternal things, family, friends, help in children's work, and so, so much more. They are far too numerous to even list here. So, I wish to highlight just three special joyful occasions for which I praise God.

Our Pearl wedding anniversary
The first was my pearl wedding anniversary in March. Adrian and I celebrated 30 years of married life. Yes, he really has put up with me for 30 years! But for me, it's been 30 years married to my best friend, the man I love. Over these years we've had times to laugh and times to cry. seen good times and bad times, experienced struggles and trials as well as blessings. We've moved house five times in our journey from Cork to Dungannon to Kerry to Dungannon....and the Lord knows where next. Adopting and raising Isaac and Jemima has been such a privilege for us and such a special part of our lives. We praise God for them and for all the love we have shared together as a family. To mark the occasion, Isaac and Jemima treated us to a lovely meal.

Adrian and I in Crete

The second was our holiday to Crete in May. It had been a long time since we had a holiday abroad but being married for 30 years was a good reason for Adrian and I to enjoy a week in Crete. We stayed in a lovely hotel, relaxed in the sunshine, enjoyed the food, visited the nearby towns each day, and soaked up the atmosphere of this beautiful island. I, even, had my first ride on a quad: Adrian driving as we traveled up to a mountain village on it!

Holiday in Crete

Thirdly, Jemima was 21 years old in June. Although, we did not get to meet and adopt Jemima until she was 10 months old, we are very proud she is our daughter. She has grown up to be a very pretty young woman. We love her and rejoice for all the joy that she and Isaac have brought us. To celebrate her 21st we had a lovely Chinese meal in Cookstown.

Jemima's 21st birthday
The Lord has been so good to us. In writing this I am not suggesting for one minute that we have never had a trial, problem, pain or heartache during 2016....but I am saying that I praise Him for all His goodness and rejoice for what He has done for us in 2016.
Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. (Philippians 4v4)
Wishing you blessing throughout 2017 as you obey His Word and rejoice in Him.