1.08.2013

What Has Been and What's to Come: Reasons Why I Love January

A New Dawn, A New Day, A New Year. 
January. A breath of fresh air, albeit cold air, I welcome you.
You are a renaissance. A rebirth. A renewal. A revival. 
You bring hope and promise.
You cause cleansing and purging. 
 You are my birth month. 

As I reflect back over the many memories and events that took place during 2012 I feel an overwhelming sense of disbelief, yet I know the blessings of the reality of it all.
Y'all know we made a major move, bought a practice, bought our first home, celebrated 6 years of marriage and haven't gone the speed limit since. 
Our odometers have been maxed out. The year was a blur. 

I feel like I spent weeks after we moved just walking around our new home staring.
I knew that Satan was whispering lies through his forked tongue into my ear when I realized I was spending hours and days staring at boxes instead of unpacking them because I thought the rug might get yanked out from under us like it had many times in the past.
Like it was a a dream, too good to be true, and I would wake up at any point.
Lies. He is the author of every. single. lie.

God, just like He always does, whispered into my heart and reminded me that this is real.
He had every single detail planned to make it all happen, and He knows our future, too.
I sighed deeply, as I rested in His love, in His grace.
I finally began to unpack.
Boxes, hopes, dreams, and goals. 
Little by little making progress.
Most days in 2012 I spent being overwhelmed by making our home our own, making our practice our own, managing hectic schedules, and making a life in our new town.
Honestly though, I feel like I wasted so much time.
Staring. Dreaming. Trying to get a vision for this that or the other. 
All the while feeling incredibly blessed and full of immense gratitude.

This year my goal is to be more intentional in how I spend my time.
I want to be more intentional in my Bible Study.
I want to be more intentional in my marriage.
More intentional in missions work, outreach and ministry.
No matter what I'm doing, I want to be doing it with a joyful heart for the Lord.

I know that for some people, not just 2012, but several years running haven't been so kind.
I sometimes struggle with sharing the joys in my life here because I know that some of you feel like you are in the pits of hell.
You are dealing with loss of loved ones or jobs, marital and other relational problems, the loss of a child, a child that has gone astray, substance abuse, health issues and cancer, and the list goes on.
I wish I could make those situations and the pain you feel subside.
And like the joys in my life, I share some of the struggles and troubles I face here, too.
We are all in this together.

What I do know is that during the most painful times in my life I have been humbled the most.
I have found strength I didn't know I had.
I have dug deep and gotten frank with God in raw emotion and desperation.
Thankfully,  I made it out of those dark caves alive with a new found purpose in my life and a new chapter to my testimony each time.

However,  I am not naive enough to believe that I won't spend some time back in those dark caves again someday.
That's part of being a Christian. The Bible tells us trouble is coming.
But if we cling to Truth during those storms, the sun will come out again...eventually.
So, my prayer is that this year would bring you blessings in many forms.
That you would open yourselves up for God to shower you in His unfailing, unconditional love, and be renewed in strength and purpose.

I want to challenge you to open your heart to God enough to ask Him what He really wants you to do in your life.
Be brave enough to ask Him if He's calling you to move, to make a major life change, to serve on a missions team, to do something out of the ordinary-out of your comfort zone.
Since we've been married, we made a commitment to always make ourselves completely available to to the Lord's will for our lives.
We want to be His hands, His feet. We will go where He sends us.
He also knows the desires of our hearts because He put those desires there in the first place.
I can't describe to you how liberating it is to make yourself 100% available to learning the Lord's will for your life.
I promise you that He won't call you to do anything or go anywhere that He can't hold your hand through and ultimately bring glory to His kingdom.

I also want to thank each and every one of you who read my blog.
I try to be open and honest and real while maintaining some dignity and grace with the purpose of glorifying God.
I hope to continue to build relationships with each of you.
You each bless me in ways you can't imagine and I am increasingly thankful for the blogging community.

So, with that said, let's continue to encourage, pray for and uplift one another this year.
I would love to plan a meet-up and I'm seriously praying about hosting a blogger weekend at our home since we live in such a central location in Georgia, so I would love it if you would join me in prayer regarding that!
Some of you asked about my exercise/diet, so I will be posting on that soon.
Brandon is also going to do a vlog to answer your veterinary questions.
I'm going to give tips on purchasing appliances for your home as well as home organization, so there are some fun things to look forward to!
Here's to making 2013 a year of growth and purpose. 

"Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus."
Philippians 3:13-14

15 comments:

  1. Thank you for your encouraging words. Your blog has quickly become a daily favorite of mine. I can relate to so many of your daily struggles, believe me! My prayer is for you and all of us in this blogging community to do carry out God's plan for every day.

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    1. You are welcome, Megan!! Thank YOU! You have made my week! Thank you for your prayers-what a blessing you are! xoxo

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  2. You are such true steward of God and spreading his love. I enjoy reading your blog and find inspiration in your journey with Christ. Life is overwhelming, but keeping God in front helps to stable your walk; for he provides for us in our darkest moments and helps us reach our greatest potential.

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    1. Meredith, you are precious. Thank YOU for your encouraging words and sharing your wisdom. You have it figured out. Thank you for your blessings. xoxo

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  3. Beautifully said! You're an inspiration!

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  4. This is such a sweet post, my favorite yet!

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  5. Cherish-I always look forward to reading your thoughts...it's so uplifting and inspiring! Thank you for being so open and honest, and for sharing the Word with all your readers! It's refreshing to read such words and thoughts from someone close in age to myself...

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    1. Thank you, Courtney. We live in a corrupt world, and like you, I find it a blessing to know that you, too, strive to live for the Lord. Thank you for blessing me today and thank you for reading. xoxo

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  6. I love your ability to be complete open yet so positive and strong. One of my goals is to grow closer with God with year as well. I feel like it's so easy to get swept up in being scared to live for him and listening to Satan's lies. That's been a major struggle for me -to stop letting Satan get in my ear and put my fire out. I'm so glad I've found your blog long ago and kept reading. :) I hope this new year brings joy and closeness to the Lord!

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    1. Kerri-this made me cry!! Thank YOU for being so loyal! I, too, am so thankful I have been reading your blog over the years. Even though we haven't ever met, I feel like I've watched you grow into an accomplished young woman. I am SO proud of you and I pray blessings upon you and your students as you have begun such a rewarding teaching career. It can be SO hard not to listen to Satan's lies, but it's much harder to deal with the consequences of believing them in the first place rather than just telling him to shut up, which I do by the way :). I pray that you will continue to gain the strength to tune him out and grow closer to God. xoxo

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  8. Beautiful post!!! Soo refreshing and great reminders! Just like you said we all ave ups and downs! Please don't ever hod back your ups!!! Sometimes it tat breath of fresh air to know that something's in life do turn out!!!

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    1. Thank you, Ashley!! I know you've been through a lot and I am fervently praying that 2013 would be YOUR year, friend! Have a blessed day! xoxo

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