{December 26, 2021}

Heartland Community Church



By Meghan Hemenway

As we approach the end of 2021, how are we feeling? Christmas has passed and maybe for some of us most of the busyness that comes with that season. And yet we still have this week of time in between: Between holidays and the return of regular schedules, between what has passed and what is to come. The end of a year is a natural time to make plans for a new year; an opportunity to restart, refresh, or reinvent the direction our lives are moving in. This in between time is what Tom Brawner calls a corridor of time. We are in a space where we are about to cross over one threshold and enter into a new one. We have 2021 nearly behind us and 2022 is on the horizon. But before we go back to the hustle of regular life, can we all pause in this moment, take a breath, and make space to notice and identify the top emotion that comes up? What about this season, or this year has brought up this feeling?

Last week I had a chance to visit with a friend I hadn’t seen since before the pandemic began. As part of a running group we had logged many miles side by side sharing the details of our weeks, but now I had a few moments to give her the highlight reel of 2020 and 2021. As I ran through the ups and downs of my life, I realized I was walking her over all the thresholds I had crossed. I had left behind parts of my life and started new seasons. I was sharing heartbreak and loss, but also hope and new beginnings. What I saw as I looked at all these transition moments was that I couldn’t have gotten to the hope and newness without leaving something old in the past. Letting go of the current way of life to make space for something new was scary and unknown at the time, but in my flyover recap I could see the beauty in all the risks I had taken. 

As you prepare to cross another threshold, imagine this week as an opportunity to look at all the thresholds of 2021 and notice how God was with you or how he provided. Then as you look toward 2022 think about what risks crossing new thresholds will require of you and how you might prepare yourself to spot God’s presence and guidance.



Join in a day of pause and connection with Jesus, led by Tom Brawner. Choose January 7 or 8, 9 AM – 1 PM. Portions will be on Zoom and solo time offline. Pick up your guided kit at Heartland in the hub December 24 or January 2. Sign up and details HERE.


{sunday 12.26.21}

Read Deuteronomy 31:6

Observe, Reflect, Apply: God tells us to be strong and courageous and he also says he will be right beside us though all the trials. God did not promise to take away the things that cause us fear, in fact, he almost guarantees that the journey will be filled with danger and things to cause us dread. But he goes with us, he will never leave us, and he will never fail. What difficulties are looming for you in the next year? How do your feelings change about facing those challenges with the thought that you have a strong, loving, unfaltering guide at your side?


{bible reading plan}

By Meghan Hemenway

{monday 12.27.21}

Read Isaiah 43:18-19

Observe, Reflect, Apply: As this year comes to a close what are the parts that you a ready to leave behind? The Lord is always working on his plan and every day is part of that plan, but sometimes we get stuck on the hard ones, finding it difficult to keep moving forward. What can you leave behind in 2021 so that you can continue to see the new path the Lord is laying out?

{tuesday 12.28.21}

Read John 10:1-6

Observe, Reflect, Apply: The Lord is our shepherd and we are his sheep. What this means is that he is the guide, the protector, the one who stakes his life on our survival and well being. Being a sheep means that we do not have to take on these responsibilities; we can let go and trust that the one who cares for us this much is always vigilant and always thinking of us. It can be difficult to rely on the shepherd when so often in our lives we are asked to be the ones coming up with the plans or to be protecting others. It can be tempting to rely on our own understanding or look to someone with answers and action right now, but not everyone has the best plan for us. Not everyone is always thinking of our well being. What issue or situation is causing you to feel anxious and to look for quick answers instead of relying on your shepherd?

{wednesday 12.29.21}

Read John 10:7-10

Observe, Reflect, Apply: In today’s verses Jesus makes it clear that there are people who do not have the best intentions for our lives. Often it is easy to spot the ones who we shouldn’t trust, but sometimes they sneak in and catch us completely by surprise. If you have a person or a situation like this can you reflect back on what signs may have been there that you missed? When did you know that their intentions were not to help, but to harm you? What can you do to practice listening to the Father’s voice?

{thursday 12.30.21}

Read Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

Observe, Reflect, Apply: The end of a year is a time to reflect on all that has passed and all that is to come. When we are in a certain season often it feels like it will never end, but each one does whether we want it to or not. There is sadness is knowing the pleasant seasons won’t stay, but relief in trusting the hard ones will pass away too. What seasons have come and gone for you this year? Can you see God’s hand in all of them or more clearly in some?

{friday 12.31.21}

Read Mark 8:22-26

Observe, Reflect, Apply: In these verses Jesus restores sight to a man who is blind. Jesus performs a miracle, but it doesn’t seem to work quite right the first time. He has to give it a second pass to help the man see clearly. Jesus did not make mistakes. His actions were intentional and he seemed to take every opportunity to teach. Why do you think he performed this miracle in this way? What is he telling us about us? What is he telling us about himself?


{extra journey resources}

CLICK HERE to visit The Bible Project site and explore their super simple, super informative Bible videos (and other resources).

CLICK HERE to get the Read Scripture App, from our friends at The Bible Project.

CLICK HERE for more on how to use the observe-reflect-apply approach to getting the most out of your Bible reading.

The Bible App Get the free YouVersion Bible for your phone, tablet, or computer. Experience the Bible anywhere, with options to highlight, save notes, and share what you are reading with others.

The Bible App For Kids YouVersion partnered with OneHope to develop the Bible App for Kids, designing it specifically to engage children with Bible stories on an age-appropriate level. The Bible App for Kids is a free app for Android, Apple, and Kindle devices, available in over 60 languages.

Bible Gateway Provides advanced Bible searching capabilities, which allow readers to find passages in scripture based on keywords, phrases, or scripture reference.

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© 2021 Heartland Community Church

12175 S Strang Line Road, Olathe, KS 66062

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