For Auld Lang Syne

Day 2 of quarantine: its not only the last day of 2020 but also the last day of a decade that has been quite a tumultuous one. The decade started with me moving back to Germany from Sweden and it ends with the concrete decision to move out of Germany to the Netherlands. The years in between have been quite turbulent with wonderful highs, both personally and professionally, and very painful lows on a personal front. The decade was full of surprises, pleasant and unpleasant; nothing went as I had planned or hoped it would. And yet when I look back on this past decade I can see how God used everything that I went through, the good and the painful, to lead me on the path that He has for me so that I can become the person I should have been a long time ago.
My Facebook timeline the past days has been filled with posts about the terrible year that 2020 has been and the hope that 2021 will be a better one, 64E0EF48-747A-428B-8C12-16FB69C4971Ea hope that is built a lot on the promise of a vaccine that will battle the Covid virus. My heart goes out to those who have experienced loss, sickness, pain, loneliness, despair this year and who find it difficult to muster up enough strength for the coming year.
My hope and wish for all of us is that we find courage, hope, peace, joy and love.
May we find the courage to leave our comfort zones behind, to dream new dreams and walk on paths that we have never walked before. May we have the courage to confront our fears and insecurities and to ask for help when we need it. May we have the courage to be authentic and real even if it makes us vulnerable. And may we have the courage to stand up for those without a voice and 0893AAFC-4120-422D-825F-0EDF128933D3call out injustice when we see it instead of looking away and/or being silent accomplices to it.
May we find hope in the most hopeless of situations and may we be that ray of hope for those lost in the darkness of despair and loneliness. May we shine for others when they feel that their light is dimmed and may we share our light with those who do not have any. And may our hope not be built on external circumstances or on any human power but on someone that is greater and far above.99EB4CA2-7DDF-4520-B5D5-9BB05AF17F7B
May we find peace in the midst of the most turbulent storms that threaten to shake our very foundations. May we strive for peace that is not superficial even when it means that we have to cut off relationships that are abusive and rob us of real peace. And may we be a haven of peace and rest for others, even if it is just for a moment or two, so that they can refresh themselves and find strength to carry on.
May we have eyes and hearts that find joy and beauty even when there is none to be found. And may we bring joy and comfort to those in despair or mourning.
IMG_3104May we find love and be a source of love even when hatred, division and hostility abounds. May we recognise abusive behaviour disguised as love and call it out even if tradition or culture thinks we should put up with it; may we love ourselves enough to set boundaries that are healthy for us. May we have empathy and understanding for those whose lives and experiences are different from ours; may we truly listen to them and learn even if it makes us uncomfortable. May we show our love to others through actions and words; may we not wait for a tomorrow that may never come to tell someone that they are loved.
May we be aware that each day is a precious gift and not put our lives on a hold till “things get better”.
For the times when courage, hope, peace, joy and love cannot be found may we have friends or find people who are there for us. In the last decade I have had many phases where I could not find any glimmer of light, love, hope or joy; where I did not know how to deal with the burning pain or the destruction caused by sickness, betrayal or abusive behaviour from those who I thought were very close to me. When I look back I know that it was not only God who carried me through these times but it was dear friendsD889B2F9-A665-45A1-ADAE-E6D2056FE0EE who stood by me, helped me, carried me with their love and prayers till I was strong enough to walk alone again.
At the end of 2020 I am eternally grateful to God who not only loves me,
does wonders in my life, has a unique plan for my life but who also blesses me with an amazing circle of friends who are my lifeline, whose love and support carry me and give me courage, strength, joy and peace.
This promise carries me into 2021 – “with God the best is yet to come”!
Sharing a beautiful rendition of the song Auld Lang Syne sung by two of my favourite artists Anita and Ben, whom I am blessed to call friends.
Happy New Year 2021 to all my friends and everyone reading this post!

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