It was a gray day. The weather suited my mood. I felt blah. Exhausted after Christmas week and fighting a cold I wasn’t in the New Year’s Eve spirit at all. Normally a productive day, which I’d had, will snap me out of it but that wasn’t the case. The pennies that met me everywhere I went were greeted with only a faint smile.
I had one last stop to make at the grocery store. Chase needed something to finish one of his creations. I couldn’t help but think about how he’d woke up smiling from ear to ear. He was excited about a new year. I wanted to feel like he did. He embodies the holiday spirit all the time. He’s the most joyful person I know.
I gathered the art supplies he wanted and went to the self-check-out only to discover one of the items wouldn’t scan. Grrrrr!!!! Now I had to ask for help. Fortunately Jan, my other mother, was working. She saw I was struggling and came over. Very few people can call me honey without getting a “look” but Jan can.
“Honey let me help,” she said putting her hand on my shoulder. The sound of her voice stopped my frustration from getting the better of me.
“Having a bad day?” she asked.
“I’m just tired—more like exhausted,” I said.
“You’ve had a long month,” she said knowing some of the details.
“I know,” I said with a sigh. “It’s nothing sleep and grace can’t cure though.”
“Amen,” she said. “Are you doing anything fun tonight?” she asked.
“I’m just going to try and stay awake ‘til 9:30pm.”
She laughed but I suddenly felt embarrassed. Jan could tell.
“That’s okay honey,” she said. “You don’t have to celebrate.”
“I know but it’s pretty pathetic,” I said.
“It’s not—it’s probably the best thing you can do. Get to bed early, get a good night’s sleep, and wake up feeling refreshed and ready for a new year filled with promise.”
I put my arm around her and said, “thank you.” Jan always knows just what to say to me. She was born to be an encourager and having lost most of her own family I’m thankful she’s adopted me. You can never have too many people to love and encourage you.
Leaving the store I spotted a penny perfectly placed below a snow shovel display. The snow winter brings always buries me emotionally and digging out is sometimes a battle. Snow is pretty but the gray that comes with it gets me down. Add to that the hustle and bustle of the holidays, the normal stress of being a parent, and the sniffles and I can’t see past what’s right in front of me. Sunny skies seem years away.
Jan’s encouragement and the penny reminded me I know better. Things would look better in the morning.
I went home fixed dinner, enjoyed games and a movie with the boys, and tucked myself in bed without noticing I’d almost made it to midnight. It seems I had more energy than I thought I did. This morning I woke up to a day where the sun actually did peek through. I felt a 100% better.
I’m not someone who typically makes resolutions on New Year’s. I find they have a tendency to defeat you. Instead, I try to make change routine in my life—no pun intended. However, this year with Jan’s encouragement I think a good resolution would be to wake up every morning remembering God’s mercies are as new as the day. Spring always comes and every day that you welcome holds that promise.
Happy New Year friends!
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is [His] faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23