7 adults + 3 dogs + 1 cat = 11. That was the total of living beings doing life together in the Hall home during Christmas 2015!

From a mom’s heart: nothing could be better! (Except possibly the absence of cat allergies.)

Bonding over our son’s designer board games was a highlight. What? You’ve never heard of designer board games? Nuns on the Run? Machi Koro? Munchkin Quest? Those were not on your Christmas wish lists?

Besides fun interactions, there are also transitions:

  • Transitions as Jenna heads back to college in Arizona.

  • Transitions for her twin sister Megan as she graduates from college and looks to her future.

  • Transitions for our oldest daughter, Kayla, as she begins her second semester of grad school in Portland.

  • Transitions for our son, David, and our sweet daughter-in-love, Danielle, as they change jobs and relocate from New Mexico to Denver.

In the swirl of unknowns, the word God continues to speak into my soul is “Believe.” In this surprisingly simple command, I sensed God’s challenge: “Believe Me, Kelly. I AM the Sovereign King of Kings. I will keep My promises. For your family. For you. Nothing can separate you from My love. Nothing is impossible for Me.”

My word for 2016: Believe.

My verse for 2016, the one that has captivated my heart for the past month:

Blessed is the one who trusts the Lord; whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by streams of water that sends out its roots by the stream. It has no fear of heat; it’s leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to produce fruit. (Jeremiah 17:7-8)

I love the word picture painted by this verse. A towering tree, strong and healthy, richly nourished by the vast supply of water, expansive branches yielding vibrant, green leaves and heavily laden with colorful fruit.

And get this: all this life is happening right out in the open, not in the protection of a greenhouse. The tree is vulnerable, exposed to the constantly changing elements, and yet in the presence of all kinds of adverse conditions, it continues to bless all who see it with its beauty and strength.

Inspiring, right? When we place our trust in the One and Only Living God, when we choose to spend time in His presence, being nourished by His Life and His Word, overcoming strength is ours!

We are not at the mercy of our circumstances!

So let’s drink deeply from the River of Life choosing to believe God when He says that the same power that raised Jesus Christ from the dead indwells us and is working on our behalf (Ephesians 1:19-20; Isaiah 64:4).

As we take God at His Word, our lives will mirror the beauty and strength of this tree, reflecting the peace, hope and joy of Jesus to all those in our ever-changing world!

I BELIEVE!