Friday Five: Fresh Starts & Covenants

Sally writes:

As I prepare this post I am aware that it will be posted on New Years Day. We stand at the beginning of 2010 looking not only at a New Year, but at a new decade full of promise and possibilities. For some of us this will be exciting, but others will approach it with trepidation and probably most of us stand on this threshold with a mix of emotions and reactions.

It is at this time of year that many (British) Methodist Churches celebrate their Annual Covenant Service, a service that will include this prayer:

I am no longer my own but yours,
Put me to what you will,
rank me with whom you will;
put me to doing,
put me to suffering;
let me be employed for you,
or laid aside for you,
exalted for you,
or brought low for you;
let me be full,
let me be empty,
let me have all things,
let me have nothing:
I freely and wholeheartedly yield all things
to your pleasure and disposal.
And now glorious and blessed God,
Father , Son and Holy Spirit,
you are mine and I am yours.
May it be so forever.
Let this covenant now made on earth
be fulfilled in heaven. AMEN

This prayer is said every year, and offers every member an opportunity to renew their covenant with God. This is no soft or easy prayer, it states in the company of others our willingness to worship God come what may, not that we should become doormats, but that we place God above all else. ( And every year if we are honest we have to acknowledge that we fail).

With this prayer in mind I bring you this Friday Five:
1. What will you gladly leave behind in 2009?
I will gladly, GLADLY leave behind my tendency to try to endure things that should be ended, make things work that just don’t and allow situations to continue that shouldn’t. Sometimes I was right the first time. I also leave behind the lateral and diagonal movements I have made to make new forward movements. I leave the belief that I cannot have or achieve some things and will choose to believe that infinitely more is available to me than I ever believed possible, as long as I am willing to trust and relinquish control.

2. What is the biggest challenge of 2010 for you?
To not pick up anything I left behind in 2009. Also, to shop less and save & give more.

3. Is there anything that you simply need to hand to God and say “all will be well, for you are with me”?
There are things that I believe God has said God wants me to be or do but that have not come to fruition. Usually, what I think God means and what God actually means are wildly different, so I as part of my journey I need to hand back to God the belief that I know what God intends because what God works out is always infinitely better than anything I could imagine.

4. If you could only achieve one thing in 2010 what would it be?

The one thing I want to do is a real life, honest-to-goodness vacation, not merely a visit to family, whom I love, but there’s always much to do with the babies.

5. Post a picture, poem or song that sums up your prayer for the year ahead….

Dear Lord, please don’t ever let it come to this:

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