"Be strong and courageous,
do not be afraid or tremble at them,
for the Lord your God is the one
who goes with you.
He will not fail you or forsake you...
And the Lord is the one who
goes ahead of you;
He will be with you.
He will not fail you or forsake you.
Do not fear,
or be dismayed."
Are you entering into new territory? I am.
Perhaps you have a child who is starting kindergarten,
first grade, middle school, high school, college, a new job.
Perhaps you and your family have moved
to a new town, a new job, a new community,
a new country, a new way of life.
Maybe you have begun a new job,
stepping out of the jeans and sweats of mommyhood
and into the slacks and blouse of the office or school.
On the other hand, maybe you've given up the office, the school, the hospital,
to stay home with sticky fingers, messy burps, and cheerios scattered.
Or maybe you've ended the familiar,
retiring from a job you've loved and thrived in,
only to figure out how to fill the days ahead of you
with a sweet balance of volunteering, relaxing, working, and travel.
Ah, the new, the unfamiliar, the challenge of it all.
Today, dearest Lord, we pray for peace
and courage and hope and victory and vigor and determination
as we march into the new.
Whether we are letting go or grabbing hold,
whispering goodbye or saying hello,
picking up or putting down,
moving in or moving on...
go with us there, go before us, better still.
And one day, remind us to look back
and see that You were there all along
and the way was good and sweet and right
even if it was bumpy and hard and bitter, too.
Lord, we trust You,
for You are trustworthy.
And we are excited,
for You are good and greatly to be praised.
May we also be faithful and true and filled with hope
because we are Your people and that is enough.