Embracing the Thought of Starting Over Again

Starting over and embracing new beginnings…

When I think of winter’s wonders, my thoughts wander like snowflakes drifting with the wind. The sudden rush of goodbyes and quiet after Christmas vacations with our loved ones left me speechless. It’s only been a few weeks since we welcomed them with open arms and happy tears, and then we blinked and, it was time to wave so long. So, I tell myself lies like: Although I know I’ll miss them, I look forward to tidying the house, mountains of January snow, and embracing the thought of starting over again.

Saying goodbye and embracing the thought of starting over again.

A fresh start, or not?

While we enjoyed a blessed holiday season with our family, moving into a new home in mid-December proved to be a challenge. Two major moves in five months can take a toll on creatives like me. I had to remind myself several hundred times that the chaos would soon pass, and this was an answered prayer in many ways. Now that it’s mid-January, all I want to do is welcome the new year with a warm, not worn, smile. I’ve anticipated a fresh start in 2022 with daydreams of quiet time in my reading nook, mugs of hot tea, and lots and lots of snow. We’re only two weeks in, and still, they’re only dreams.

But they who wait on the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.

Isaiah 40:31 ESV

When dreams turn into repetitive nightmares.

Today, my family planned to celebrate the second anniversary of my husband’s near-death experience and inspiring survival story. Instead, we’re catching our breath again after another freaky medical issue when his meds landed him in the hospital and at death’s door (again) a few days ago. We wanted to celebrate his life this week, not watch in horror as he was air-lifted to a hospital two hours away.

What if our worst nightmares remind us how blessed we are to have the opportunity to embrace the thought of starting over . . . again?

Starting over again

The good news is, even though things can change for the worst in an instant, God knows our needs and can quiet our fears. He set his plan in motion with the right people and opened hospital doors when they were sealed shut due to Covid restrictions. The details are etched in my mind where they’ll stay until my pen prods my scrambled brain to tell more. So today, I choose to savor another miracle and hope my hubby will be home soon. I’ve seen how every bump or trial in life can lead us to even more blessings. For better or worse, I believe with God by our side, we can endure the fiercest storms and look forward to embracing the many new beginnings of starting over again.

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.    

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

The weather forecast says we’re expecting our first significant snowfall, so perhaps he’ll be here just in time for us to take our dogs for a romp in the snow.

Thankful for every snowfall we get to romp in together.

Dear friends,

Have you ever struggled with change or embracing the thought of starting over again? If so, I’ll bet we’re not alone. I don’t know what tomorrow will bring. All I know is I have endured several storms with God by my side. I hope you do too. Please join the conversation. I’d love to hear your thoughts and stories here in the Inspire a Fire comments section below.

*Special thanks to Pixabay for use of free images. Feature image: StockSnap, #1: john_loannidis,  #2 Personal photograghy by Joann Claypoole, #3 jplenio.

Joann Claypoole

Joann Claypoole is an author, speaker, and former spa-girl entrepreneur. She's a wife, mother of four sons, “Numi” to four grandchildren, doggie-mom of two. The award-winning author of The Gardener’s Helper’s (ages 5-9 MJ Publishing2015) would rather be writing, hiking in the mountains, or inviting deer and other wildlife to stay for dinner near her western NC writing retreat. Visit her website: joannclaypoole.com and WordPress blog: https://joannclaypoole.wordpress.com/

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  1. Plz Read,Like,Comment, and Share with your Family and Friends on Joann’s Inspireafire blog site.
    Another must read!

  2. Joann even with all that you are going through you managed to write a beautiful inspirational piece
    God is definitely with you and Denny

  3. Joann, you are truly amazing! With what you are going through you still manage to write this beautiful, inspirational piece! I’m so sorry that you and Dennis have had to experience yet another very scary medical crisis! I will keep Dennis and you in my prayers! I pray that Dennis will be home by your side soon and I pray for healing for Dennis!
    Hugs, love and prayers always! 🙏🏻♥️🙏🏻

    1. God bless you, Lynda. Sorry for the late response. I’m so tired. A week went by in a blur! We’re so thankful Dennis is finally better and home where he belongs.

  4. Joann, your wisdom & discernment helps others see starting over is a huge part of life. As well as a deepening relationship with our Father as we cling to him during trials. The very thing He wants us to do, rely on Him in the Valleys & praise Him while we are in them. . I’m so sorry to hear this. I can’t imagine!! Thank you for your vulnerability. You are so loved !! Your gift of expression is well ..a gift 🎁 to others ❤️ Love sharon

  5. I have tears reading this because at my age (74), I can’t help but wonder what my life will be like if/when I lose Gary. Satan would have me live in the dark shadows of sadness imagining life without him. But I know my Heavenly Father will always be there to mend my broken heart and he’ll me too forge ahead to do whatever He asks of me. And then there’s no guarantee that I won’t go first, or the Lord could come back and take both of us together.
    So all that to say your blog helped me keep my eyes focused on Jesus and on the here and now. We have much to do for the kingdom.
    Thank you for this timely reminder to be grateful.

    1. I miss your wisdom, my precious friend. Forgive me for taking so long to respond. This week was a blur. It’s true we have no guarantee who will go home first, but I’m so thankful we do have the guarantee of heaven and eternity together. No more pain. Only Jesus. And hopefully, lots of meadows, hills, flowers…and loved ones.

  6. As usual I got so focused on the application of this blog to my own life that I forgot to say how sorry I am about Dennis. Glad that our gracious Heavenly Father saw him through once again and pray he comes home quickly.
    Love you 😍 ~Charlene

  7. Joann, my thoughts and prayers are with you and Dennis at this trying time. You are both so strong and will get past this trial. God is good. May he keep a watchful eye over you both.
    🙏❤ Tammy

  8. I miss your wisdom, my precious friend. Forgive me for taking so long to respond. This week was a blur. It’s true we have no guarantee who will go home first, but I’m so thankful we do have the guarantee of heaven and eternity together. No more pain. Only Jesus. And hopefully, lots of meadows, hills, flowers…and loved ones.

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