Wednesday, December 29, 2010


Ever since Christmas day I have been focused on the new year. This week so far has been full of plans and work to make things ready for 2011. We cleared out the closets that so easily become over-run and even tackled the basement in this effort to start fresh. Everything is plain, clean, and simple today.

Brian and I have some very different ideas about what daily life should be. This book-nerd girl married a tech-geek guy, and while there is sometimes a clash born out of that difference, there is one thing we agree on: Keep It Simple.

Last year I named my year presence. Brian was in school 20 hours for his last semester of college plus working 60+ hours a week and I felt a little crazy keeping everything together with house, kids and studio while he was mostly absent from daily life. The focus on presence helped me to narrow my mind to only the task at hand, instead of my brain scattering through all the tasks for the day and even week.

And did I accomplish what I set out to do? Sort of.

The thing is, I tried to do it. I tried to make it happen instead of truly making it prayerful and focused with God in the center. I tried to make it the way I wanted it instead of letting God shape it, and what a more glorious thing that would have been! Oh what I missed due to selfishness!

Has it really been 5 months since I felt like God dropped me so that I would have no choice but to let Him re-make me? I know now that it was the only way to have such a massive change of attitude. I know now that He didn't drop me, I hit that bottom on my own where I could finally admit my defeat and all I could say was

God, I cannot do this. I need you.

As I thought about a word for this year, there have been many to cross my mind. I can hardly settle on one, it seems, because no one word seems to encompass my spiritual need.

For this year, my word is Change.

If I could subtitle it for clarity I'd include: Grow, Reach, Be Willing, Abide, Pray.

And it's all a little scary. I mean, at any time God could ask me to really grow, to reach for God-sized things, to be willing to go, to stay, to do hard things... And if He really asks? How do I step forward? What is the next thing?

... and that's where I get stuck. That's why the word for this year is Change. I revert again and again to my natural state of doubt and worry, my need to know what the next step will be, what exactly might be asked of me so I can plan for it and be prepared...

And yet God doesn't always give us next steps. And I think in my case He may not for a very long time if ever because I seem to desire that information so very much. I need a re-boot, a full change in perspective, if you will, and this is the year for change.

Is it simple? Not at all. I'm a little worried about that, since it so goes against the established order around here, but this is my step forward in faith. Taking the things that are a little messy, a little complicated, a lot different, and proceeding anyway. Praying, centered on God, trusting that He guides my progress.


Ann Voskamp invites us this week to define the coming year. You can visit her at A Holy Experience.

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  1. I admire you for choosing "Change" as your theme! May God bless you with courage and flexibility and much faith for whatever "change" will mean this year.

  2. I want to let you know first, that I found you from Ann’s. I know I’m late but I was an upside down reader – I began with the last one and just now got to yours :)

    I too have a “natural” state of doubt and worry. I know the value of change – yet hate change.

    And your word “change” – something every single one of us desperately needs. I heart this name for this year.

    I have prayed for your year of “change” for Our Lord to help you trust as He guides your progress, that he help you identify, that he keep you motivated, that he be with you and send people to help you.

    I am led to say this too – it’s something he told me once, “be as patient with yourself as I am with you.”

    My word is “connection” – your words connected with me, and I’m grateful for that.

    God Bless and Keep you and yours.


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