Its commonplace for me to roll into the new year with all my intentions set, ready to springboard myself into a renewed purpose for the year ahead. I have to say, though, it’s not been that way this year.
Honestly, I am proud of myself for getting through last year in one piece!
For some reason, moms who are labelled overachievers or people- pleasers ( like I have been called a number of times), we feel like something is wrong if we dare to to ever be ‘proud of ourselves’. Well I know the bible speaks against pride, but I’m not talking about arrogant pride, like in Proverbs 11:2 or Proverbs 16:5 (go look it up!), I’m talking about a joyful pride. Maybe I am using the wrong word, but you know what I mean. I’m talking about a sense of joy, contentment and satisfaction, like what I imagine Jesus had when He looked down on His Mom, sobbing tears of grief at the feet of the cross; or the sense of joy when He appeared to Mary Magdalene just after His resurrection knowing that His work on the cross was complete and she and everyone else who accepted Him was now totally freed from their sins. This joyful ‘pride’ that says ‘Thank you Lord for allowing me to do what you have purposed me to do and thank you Lord for guiding me through.’
Wait! How did we get to talking about ‘pride’? People, I digress. I guess this is what happens when you haven’t written in a long time. But we’ll come back to this, I promise!
As I was saying, the new year rolled in and I hadn’t really thought much about my intentions or goals. I only ruminated on some thoughts about what went well in 2021, where did I struggle and what’s the game plan to execute this year. Mostly, I focused on just ‘living well’ for the past 12 months. Living well, in every area of my life, by honouring God in every area of my life. What did it look like? It looked like, taking care of my body by establishing a workable exercise routine, being conscious and intentional about my eating habits. It looked like spending more time reflecting and praying over my daily interactions with my girls and hubby. It looked like establishing rhythms for my home that honour God and bring a sense of peace and joy to our home. It looked like being consistent in a daily prayer time and being better stewards of our finances. I didn’t have a specific checklist like people sometimes do. (And just so you know, I absolutely live for lists!) I just wanted to get the most out of the 365 days that I wasn’t even promised, by living each day to its fullest.
Did I do this EVERY SINGLE DAY of 2021? Don’t be ridiculous! Of course not! I fell off, but I knew in my heart that I wanted to experience the real joy of Christ in my life and so anytime I felt off track I found my way back to Him. That was 2021.
Now 2022! So 2021 worked for me, as hard a year as it was. I figured why change the game at at this point. Can I not just do the same this year, live well? I want a deeper feeling of that joy and peace from 2021. So we are doing it again people! We are living well in 2022! I’m going deeper by being more consistent and more purposeful in my relationships with Jesus and with others. That’s pretty much it! I am realizing in this life of uncertainty, that all I really want is whatever God has laid out for me. And when I become so busy making my own plans, I end up squeezing Him out of the picture a lot of the time. Oh yeah! Make your plans but keep Jesus at the centre! No, I’ve tried it that way and I found that I am still ‘unsuccessfully’ leading the way when I do that because I try to fit Him into my very flawed, laced- with- human- limitations plan. It doesn’t work!
Commit to the Lord whatever you do and he will establish your plans.Proverbs 16:3
It does work, however, when we make the space for God to fill our lives and let Him lead us into His purpose for our lives. I know that walking into new territory with no clear plan or direction can feel like you’re flapping around meaninglessly in a vast open space or going in circles with no way out. But I am learning that God knows my heart, He knows my future, He gave me dreams and knows my desires and more importantly, He created me, so He knows where I lack and what I need. If anyone can take me to where I am meant to be going and give me what I am meant to have, it’s Him! Following His lead is the plan, is the goal, is the intention. That’s it!
So I am just checking in, not a long one but I thought I should say Happy New Year to my people. See at least I got it in before January ended. Pray for me, I will do better! Sending smiles your way.
In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.Proverbs 16:9