As I look back at 2021, I am grateful for my blessings, aware of all the things I wish I had done differently, remorseful for the pain I have caused others, saddened by all the suffering around me and excited by challenges that stretched me to grow. If that sounds like a mixed bag, there’s good reason. It is. But this is exactly what it means to be human. And more importantly, it is exactly what has helped me realize why I need Jesus more than ever. And I do. I need his love that seeks me out where I am as I am. I need his salvation to heal the relationship with him I have ruptured. I need his new life that enables me to be the person God has created me to be. I need his joy that transcends both despair and happiness. I need his hope that he is making God’s will just as much a reality on earth as it already is in heaven. And it’s because of all of this  that my deepest longing as I look ahead to 2022 is that we fall more deeply in love with Jesus than we ever have before.