Fireworks

New Year’s Eve 2014. It feels like yesterday. The sun had set and I was feeling reflective (as per new year’s tradition). I was looking through a bunch of Instagram photos that I had printed through Inkifi (worth doing), and one photo I had of fireworks grabbed my attention. It seemed rather apt, giving what night it was. I prayerfully gazed at it, wondering if it held some hidden wisdom for the new year. I picked up a pen and wrote on it the first words that came to mind…

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I cautiously hid the card in my journal, unsure to what extent, if at all, the words were a picture of what was to come.

But as the new year has approached I have returned to the card, and I think the words inscribed on it are a fitting description of the past twelve months. As we well know, fireworks work best at night. Send them off during the day and though loud bangs will be heard, the effect is muted and the colours will not truly show. But shoot them off into the dark night sky and all their rich and varied colours will be seen and heard in all their majestic and excitable glory.

Looking back on the past year many good and unexpected things have happened and emerged in my life, much of which has been born out of challenge and trial and difficulty and hurt. Like the bursting forth of fireworks into the night sky, the dark backdrop has oftentimes served to make the explosion of colour so beautiful. For this I can only thank God, whose faithfulness and wisdom and love in all areas of my life has again left me humbled and overwhelmed.

Going into a new year I will lay hold of this card with renewed hope, for it will remind me that when the dark nights settle in again I must not fear nor fret, because it is the bleakest of nights that so often bring out the most colourful and captivating of sights. And for you, too, if there be any darkness that lingers over what has been or what is to come, my prayer is that God will bring forth an unexpected display of colour and sound that will cause you to gaze on in wonder and amazement.

In the words of Minnie Haskins:

And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year:

“Give me a light, that I may tread safely into the unknown!”

And he replied:

“Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.

That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”

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