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Reflecting on 2016

But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.
- Luke 2:19

Today’s passage comes after Mary has already given birth to Jesus and received a group of shepherds bearing news that an army of angels had told them to seek out this new baby and his family.

In the last year Mary’s life has been turned upside down. And there’s more to come: she will be a refugee, she will parent the world’s only sinless child, and she will struggle with that child’s destiny. Mary’s life would be a wonderful life, but not an easy one. That first year that brackets the Christmas story contains in it the pattern of much that is to come.

Mary’s practice of treasuring what has happened and pondering them in her heart is a practice that can serve us well in our own lives. For many of us 2016 has been a wild year – memorable and a bit of a blur.

Take some time to treasure and ponder the past year. Here are some questions to guide you:

  • What were some high points of 2016? What can you celebrate?
  • Where did you experience God’s presence in 2016?
  • What were some low points of 2016? Where did you see failure and sorrow?
  • Where did you wish you experience what felt like God’s absence in 2016?
  • How do you think you’ve changed in the past year?

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