It is so good to go back and remember.
Here are a couple of ways!
Photos: Look back in your photos and scroll back to the beginning of 2020. Take note of where you were and who you were with. As you look at the photos, take some time to remember what God has brought you through.
Give Him praise for the times that He showed up and made something happen on your behalf.
Give Him praise for healthy relationships and the people who are in your life that make you better. (You could even send that person a text letting them know you are so thankful for them.)
You may see some people who are no longer in your life, and you can thank God for the part they played and the influence they had in your life.
Calendar: Get your calendar out and go back to the beginning of 2020 to remember all of the different events it held. As you remember the events, you will think of people and situations. Some events made you happy, some made you cry, some were healthy, and some were not. Go back to remember and learn something from every event.
These are both really fun to do as a family or with friends. It is so healthy to remember.
What did you love about the year, what didn't you like?
What do you wish you would have done differently?
What are you glad you did?
When 2020 started, Matt and I were at the Passion conference with 65,000 college students praising God. We started 2020 with an intense time of fasting and prayer. I would love to be able to do that again and we can't but I will give thanks for how 2020 started.
Another thing Matt and I did in 2020 that I really loved was to read through Jimmy Evans' book "The 4 Laws of Love". As we read this book together, it brought about some great healing and very much needed conversations. This is something I want to continue to do. I am so thankful we did this.
Psalm 136 gives us a great outline of going back to remember and give thanks.
The chapter starts by giving thanks to God for who He is after every attribute. It reminds us that "His love endures forever."
Let's spend some time thanking God for who He is.
He is love.
He is in control.
He is healer.
He is our strong tower.
He is our refuge.
He is our salvation.
He is the creator.
Then it goes on to list things that God did for the Israelites.
In verse 11, they remembered that God brought the Israelites out of Egypt. What has He brought you out of in 2020? Can you give God praise and thanks for what He did? Then they declare, "His love endures forever."
What pit has He brought you out of?
The pit of despair.
The pit of fear.
The pit of uncertainty.
The pit of chaos.
His arm is not so short that He cannot reach down and save you.
In verse 14, we are reminded that God brought them safely through...through the red sea and through the desert. He brought them through.
He brought us through 2020. Can you give Him thanks and praise? Can you declare that His love endures forever?
In verse 16, they are thankful that God led them through. He led them with a cloud by day and a fire by night. He fed them with manna and quail. He led them. Today He leads us. He leads us by His Holy Spirit.
Prayer and fasting helps us to clear out the clutter to hear the Holy Spirit and where He is leading us. Let me encourage you to join me in giving God the first of our year through prayer and fasting.
Join me for 21 Days of Prayer and Fasting this month! You can sign up here!
What are things that are cluttering up your life?
God wants to lead you to the promised land. Can you hear Him? Are you following?
In verse 23, the writer says that God is so good because He remembers us in our weakness. In the New Testament, we are told that when we are weak, God is strong. Can you give God thanks that in your weakness, He is strong?
In the very last verse, it says to give thanks to the God of Heaven. His faithful love endures forever.
Can you give God thanks when life doesn't go your way? Can you give God thanks through difficult situations? Even in our weakness, we can praise and thank God because His faithful love endures forever.
So take some time as you begin 2021 to look back and remember the goodness of God. I would encourage you to get a journal and write down things you are thankful for. It will affect how you go through 2021.