Well 2017, my darling, it’s going to be hard to say goodbye to you. You’ve held some of the happiest times of my life to date; a discovery of fruit and seed oatcakes, watching every episode of Gilmore girls ever made, adventures, travel and an engagement. This year I’ve stepped out in faith more than I have my whole time as a Christian. I’ve learnt to worship more freely and developed a skill I have coveted and longed for, for a long time; clapping in time to a beat. I’ve even managed to clap successfully and appropriately off beat a few times. Truly miraculous.
Within the walls of 2017 I leave behind some very fond and wonderful memories. Memories of things and people that are stored and treasured fondly even if many of these are too painful to be revisited- like the day I sent my beloved 2007 Fiat Panda to the scrap heap in the sky. In 2017, I’ve had to learn what to do when it doesn’t work out like it should, how to tell people your wedding is no longer happening. I’ve had to walk into rooms where people know more about decisions that have directed the course of my life than I ever will. The feeling of loss this year has been intense and the urge to run away has been strong. And that was just when I had to make a horrendous phone call to my dad to admit sleeping in for a flight out to see him. But perhaps most importantly I’ve learnt that when you’re smiling ear to ear saying ‘I’m fine’ like Ross from Friends - you’re probably not fine.
However, my dear 2017 you’ve shown me more of the incredible God I worship and for that you will remain one of my favourite years. You’ve shown me a God who has picked me up, held my heart, dried my tears and set me on a new path. A path I have learnt leads directly to Him. 2017 you’ve challenged me to trust the scripture when it says He’ll make all things work together for my good, to trust God when he says to be still and to hold my tongue when I’ve wanted to do anything but. This year I’ve encountered more than ever before a God who has protected me and given incomprehensible provision- a new place to live, a new role at work, stronger friendships than I’ve ever known and some incredibly happy times among the sad. A God who remembers me - I count it no coincidence the obscure worship song I planned to walk down the aisle to was sung at the conference I was attending on what should have been my wedding day. And in that moment God led me down an aisle into His wide open arms. He is so so gentle and kind to me.
2017 you’re slipping away now. And I feel God say to me that He has a new story to put on my heart for 2018. He is reminding me that it was two years ago on a squeaky air bed in my friends spare room on New Year’s Day that I prayed that He would be the constant in my life. And the constant He has been.
And Friends, no matter what 2017 has held for you- happy or sad, or what you excitedly await or painfully anticipate in 2018, God is the same; yesterday, today and forever. The promises He’s made stand; He is an unshakeable fortress- take that from a very shakeable Frankie! And whatever 2018 holds for me I trust Him and press on excitedly to the prize of discovering more of Him in the coming year.
Though another series of a Gilmore girls would also be a welcome addition to my 2018.
Happy New Year you lovely lot, have the most lovely Hogmanay and I pray your 2018 holds a new adventure.
Love, Frankie x
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Thoughts, experiences, and encouragement from the ladies of Falkirk Vineyard.