It has officially been 2015 for 2 1/2 hours here. the house is quiet, the neighbors have stopped setting off fireworks ( a tradition here) and the snow flurries have all but disappeared.
The weatherman was wrong, once again.
We'd been promised 3-5 inches but nothing but flurries arrived - and with it, a biting cold air that seemed to turn coats into crepe paper.
We usually get snow about once every 5 years, and we're 2 years overdue.
Usually it's not an issue. But this year, my nephew from California is living with us to go to school - and he has never, in all of his 21 years, seen it snow. He's been in the snow before, but never while it was actually coming down, and he would love, just once, to see it.
So we will keep praying.
Meanwhile, I have been pondering my word for 2015.
Last year's was "notice". It kept my attention - here and there. I must confess that certain periods of time were consumed by other avenues.
This year I am praying my one word will be much more prevalent in my thoughts.
Because this year the word is "love"
And hopefully, it is of the agape variety.
I want to let my heart be a conduit for Jesus. To notice the calculating stare of the person on the corner with the sign begging - and love him anyway.
To take the insults and demeaning comments and let them flow past me, not responding in kind.
To find ways to bless others with words, deeds and prayers.
To keep my heart and hands as open as I can manage.
To make people feel loved - from my cat to anyone I bump into.
Yesterday, in the grocery store, several people went out of their way to offer assistance, as I was in the putt-putt the store offers to those of us with mobility issues. One woman offered to help me reach something - out of the blue, because I wasn't even looking at anything - she just saw me and offered. It left me feeling blessed and not handicapped.
And that's what I want to give others. I want to be more aware of them and less of me. I want to bless them.
I want my friends and family to feel loved and cared for and doted on.
When was the last time you doted on anyone?
I've been doting on my nephew today. He and his friends gathered here tonight - which is a big relief, because here on the outskirts of Vegas, on New Year's Eve, the LVPD says that probably every other car is being driven by someone inebriated. I really didn't want to think of him out there with his friends. And so when he asked to have them here, it was a great relief. Every one of the folks he hangs out with are kind, funny, good-hearted people.
I hope I made them feel welcomed and cared for - before I discreetly absented myself from their get-together.
(And after I told them if there was no designated driver, they would be spending the night here.) In capital letters I said, "NO ONE WHO IS EVEN SLIGHTLY IMPAIRED WILL LEAVE THIS HOUSE TONIGHT".
This is my nephew's first NYE of legal drinking age. He bought some champagne to share with his friends. He is a responsible guy, as are his friends.
But sometimes, the law needs to be laid down, just in case.
And that brings me back to my word for the year.
Loving one another is, actually , the only new law that Jesus laid down. Hopefully I've complied with it - but I know, to my great shame, I've never concentrated on it.
So I want to make 2015 the most loving year of my life heretofore.
In doing so, I want there to be less of me.
Less of me complaining. Less of me getting irritated. Totally less of me getting sarcastic, which happens in less than the blink of an eye, especially with store people and/or faulty merchandise.
So you can see why there needs to be less of me. Cuz the me that's mostly in evidence is the sin-nature me. And I want to boot her tush outta here.
And in her place, perhaps, some shining little puddles of God's love flowing through me to bless and comfort others.
So if anyone has taken the time to read alllll the way thru this entry : May God bless you with a knowledge of His loving kindness and delight in you this day. Not because you earned it, because you couldn't. Not because you were "good" today because you weren't.
God loves you just because you are you.
The same way He loves me
Just imagine that! It takes my breath away each time I think of it. The Creator and King of the entire universe actually loves us - He knows us by name, by DNA, by all those besetting sins we wish weren't part of us - He knows about each one - and loves us still. And that love led Him to the cross - because He'd really rather die than live without us - sinful, surly, complaining ol' us.
And with His help this year (and hopefully every other year as well) I want to love you the exact same way.
Happy New Year!