On Thanksgiving Day 2013, after spending over a week helping my grandparents whose home was severely damaged by the tornado that demolished a significant part of their town this November, I realized in an even greater way that I had many things to be thankful for. I began to lavish upon God my thankfulness that my grandparents were still alive, that sentimental mementos of my mother who passed away in 1999 were still preserved and intact in photo albums in my grandparent’s home, and that, by God’s grace, I had made it through the “tornadoes” in my life this year.
As I continued to thank God in my car drive on Thanksgiving night, I said one thing that triggered a response from Him. I said, “Thank you for what You protected me from this year.” Immediately, I heard Him say, “I don’t want you to just be aware of what you were protected FROM. I want you to also know what you were protected FOR.” God is not just Alpha (the beginning), but He is also Omega (the end). He is not just Author. He is Finisher. He has a perspective beyond our own, and what a blessing it is when He gives us glimpses of what He already knows as our Omega and Finisher.
Looking back over 2013, I can honestly say it was both one of the worst and one of the best years of my life. The loss can be easily measured in the same way media footage and photos of the tornado damage of Washington, IL measured that devastation. It would be easy to go back through the pictures in my mind and review the losses of 2013, but there is another “photo album” I choose to thumb through. That photo album may not have any pictures in it yet, but when I look at those empty pages, I am filled with hope that can only come from a God Who has assured me that I have been protected FOR something. At the end of a year of bests and worsts and the beginning of a year of unknowns, I can trust in the God who promises to give us all a hope and future.