2024 is in full swing and I’m just now taking the time to reflect on the previous year as I set intentions for the present. Better late than never, amiright? 🙂

2023 was my year of seeking trust in the Lord and oh, did I need it! As I sat down to write Seeking Trust last January, I never could have predicted the spiral I was about to stumble down and the black cloud that would have hung over me for nearly a quarter of the year. True to God’s character, He used a dark season to shine Light into my life, expose hidden grim that needed deep cleaning, and discard some broken branches that needed pruning in order for new life to grow. 

Even though the sun returned mid-way through the year, I was still in this odd season of feeling a need to pull back from my writing ministry, focus on my family, and just be. As you’ll seen in my belated annual book recap (to be shared with you soon), I didn’t read many books in 2023. In fact, I cannot recall a year in the last decade where I didn’t read over 20 books! While I love reading (y’all know that!), I just couldn’t bring myself to read much last year…I think the rejection of not having my manuscript picked up by the publishers I submitted to really did a number on my psyche. Comparison, jealously, and more subconsciously affected my desire to read non-fiction works and (gulp) support authors by providing rave reviews of their published accomplishments.  

 It’s true, I felt much defeat and failure after pouring my heart and soul into my book proposal, but deep down I know God had a purpose for that process if nothing other than drawing me closer to Him and providing me with wisdom to understand my past. I continued to trust in His will over my ways which led me to launch an “influencer” social media account for my second daughter, Ally, and her dance career. As it turned out, God wasn’t wanting me to focus on my story but rather play an important role in the testimony of my daughter. The decision to create a social media account [for her] came after much prayer and has been a source of goodness in our life. The biggest accomplishment, though, has been Ally’s acceptance of Jesus as her Lord and Savior! We continue to pray for God to use her, her gifts, talents, and platform to bring glory, honor, and praise to His name!* 

My trust in the Lord continued throughout the Summer and Fall as two huge blessings occurred, one unexpected and the other much anticipated. 

The weekend before school was to start in August, I was overcome with the peace and clarity I had prayed for to homeschool my five children. While I spent months praying for discernment on homeschooling Ally so she could focus more on building her pre-professional dance career, something didn’t feel right. It wasn’t until I surrendered all five children to the Lord that I felt Him calling me to homeschool all my children. It has been the best parenting decision my husband and I have ever made, the biggest blessing our family has ever received, and I never imagined I’d be saying this, but I wish I had homeschooled sooner. Of course, I can see now how God has been doing His work within me over the last few years to prepare me for this new role and like always, His timing was perfect. 

The other big blessing of 2023 was completing the three-year design and build of our home. Reflecting on the years spent acquiring the property, designing every detail of our home and watching our dream come to fruition is a testimony of God’s faithfulness. SO MUCH occurred in my family’s life over those years and I see God’s hand throughout it all. I am humbled to be experiencing all the prayers I prayed, and I continue to pray for God to use my family and our home for the work of His kingdom. 

2023 was a year that showed me we can fall yet rise again. The lesson learned is we have the choice to stop sulking and get up. There was a moment early last year when I thought the cloud (covering my spirit) would never be lifted. I cried all the time (my bible study gals can attest to that!) and was in this “funk” of burden and negativity. But God…I was down but I chose to look up even when I couldn’t see the Light. I knew the Light was there and trusted it would shine once again. And it did, as it always does.

I’m grateful for God’s mercies and faithfulness, they never cease or fail. In the highs and in the lows, He is there. Always. 

“Because of the Lord’s faithful love we do not perish for His mercies never end. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness! I say, “The Lord is my portion,
therefore I will put my hope in Him.”

Lamentations 3:22-24 (CSB)

So cheers to a new year continuing to trust in the Lord as He grows my faith and centers my heart to seek His GLORY, my word of focus for 2024! I hope to meet you again here real soon and reconnect on Facebook and Instagram @thisischristenfox as I share all the things God is leading me to pursue this year – faith, family, freedom, discipleship, homeschooling, books, and so much more!

*You can follow Ally on Facebook and Instagram @allygracedance. This dance season she will be competing a solo called, “Fly” by Elle Limebear. The song testifies of the “lightness” experienced when one receives salvation from Christ’s sacrifice. The weightlessness of one’s burden’s being left at the cross makes the Christ-follower “fly.”

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