Words from Janelle Braun…

January 19, 2021

Janelle Braun

Could it really be 2021 already? For most of us, 2020 was a strange year. One filled with new realities, new obstacles, new blessings and an ever-changing “new normal.” Although each of us carried our own unique experience this past year, we all carried a shared reality. Things had to be done differently.

Often, I embrace change with a very optimistic perspective, that this newness will shape me and bring forth growth opportunities. But to be honest, this past year, I’ve struggled to maintain this optimistic attitude. Upon returning from my maternity leave in March of 2020, little did I know I’d be leaving again in January 2021 without having had the chance to reconnect with many of you in the meaningful ways I had imagined. 

One of the aspects of my role with MBCM that I have enjoyed the most is growing and learning together with and from you, the greater MB family here in Manitoba and beyond. However, in reflecting over this past year, I can honestly say, amidst the grief, sadness, confusion and exhaustion, I do have much to be thankful for.

Although we have been restricted by the type of gatherings we’ve been able to have, I am thankful that we’ve been able to walk through this together. Reminding one another of truth, the power of community & togetherness and the gracious sustaining nature of our God. God’s presence has not changed, nor has God’s promise of redemption and restoration for our hurting world. The message of hope that we as the church hold is needed more than ever. Of this, I remain confident.

And now, as I look forward to yet more change, adding another little human to our family and stepping away from the MBCM team, I want to leave you with a word of encouragement in your work and service. Wherever you find yourself in this season, I pray that you would be given fresh wind beneath your wings, to know that every little thing you do, when you do it unto the Lord, can and will be used in mighty ways! May you continue the good work that God has already begun and will continue to accomplish in and through you. I love you, my brothers and sisters, and am thankful to be a part of this family.

Philippians 1:6 (The Voice) – a newer translation that was introduced to me this past year: “ I am confident that the Creator, who has begun such a great work among you, will not stop in mid-design but will keep perfecting you until the day Jesus the Anointed, our Liberating King, returns to redeem the world.”