The beginning of January is one of my favorite seasons. I don’t generally like making formal New Years resolutions, but I think there is value in reflecting on the past year and anticipating what the new year may bring with it. As I begin settling into 2015 and anticipating what the next 345 days will look like, there are a few things I have been sensing.
A sense of expectancy. By this, I mean a sense of expectancy for what God has in store.
- I am aware of the paths God has brought me through in 2014, but I am feeling an awareness of the paths He may bring me through in 2015.
- The best way I can describe it is that I can see the ground beneath my feet, but the steps ahead are still covered by a mist; the year is just within sight but a wonderful mystery still awaits.
A sense of excitement. I am excited for the place God has already rooted me, and I am excited to bloom where I’ve been planted.
- Now that I have almost two years of nursing under my belt, I no longer feel like a newbie on the unit. I am thankful for the nurses and medical team God has surrounded me with at work, and I also view myself as an important member of that team.
- I am an introvert. I may have some outgoing tendancies, but at the end of the day I really crave peace and quiet. It’s in the quiet that I will be leaving space for creativity. That one day each week where I stay in bed to the early afternoon, surrounded by books and journals with a big coffee mug in hand is where my creative juices flow. And spending a few (seemingly useless) hours at a coffee shop gives me space to reflect, to read, to muse, to write and cross-out, or to write and expand.
- A more recent addition to my plans for 2015 is a women’s reading group. I am excited to read more! I am excited to read more whilst delving into conversations with other women. Each of us is from a different background, different lifestyle, and different generation. Every woman needs a girls night, and ours will look like lively conversation, vulnerability and a glass of fine wine.
A sense of response. A sense of leaning into the Lord and hearing from Him.
- Cody and I are officially entering our first full calendar year of marriage. 2015 will not go without many lessons of learning to love, respect, and serve each other more fully as we press into God’s design for marriage.
- On January 1st I finally finished reading the Bible. I’ve done the (almost) daily studies with multiple chapters and books, and grown to appreciate the text that was long and difficult. But I am committing to a deeper study of God’s Word. Because when I finished the last un-read verse and closed my Bible I thought, “Wait, I still have questions. I don’t totally understand.” As such is the Word of God: always offering new wisdom. The Word is truly living! So I’ve finally started a scripture journal to jot notes and thoughts and prayers, and spend time in a deeper study of each chapter.
- Cody and I are exploring the joys of serving together. On the horizons are youth ministry and training for Christian-based counseling. Planning a wedding and the short period of engagement left little room for activities. But with the wedding behind us and six months of immersion in a solid church, we are ready to dig into God’s work. We have very different gifts and interests, but God has paired us dynamically. I love our strengths and weaknesses that seem to compliment each other, and we are confident that God will use us as we take steps of faith.
- I know that no matter what the year holds, it will be covered by God’s grace, as we continually learn to look to the gospel. Through the grand adventures and the seemingly mundane, God is with us through it all.
Never get over the grace of God in choosing to give you eternal life…God’s sovereign, undeserved grace makes your story special and anything but ordinary!
– Gloria Furman, Glimpses of Grace
This brings me back to my first thought for the year: a sense of expectancy for what God has in store. In her first book, Gloria Furman puts it so eloquently:
The transforming nature of this gospel has a radical impact on our mundane lives. Many of us go through our Christian lives discouraged by an underrealized perspective of our sanctification..But the practice of preaching the gospel to yourself doesn’t mean that you just give yourself mini-sermons when you feel your faith wavering..This means that your faith looks forward to promises of God fulfilled for you forever.
No matter what the steps of 2015 hold in the misty unknown, His promises will line the path.