I have 7 hours left to lose another 30 pounds, finish writing a book, run a marathon and make it to New York.
I don’t think I’m going to make it.
Yep Yep Yep, it is New Year’s Eve again. This time, 2014 is morphing into 2015.
I wish I could say I was one of those awesomely cool-type people who can write about how they eschew New Year’s resolutions, New Year’s reflections, Goal Setting, and so on and so forth. But I’m not, so I can’t say that I am.
Instead, I’m the kind of person that loves all that stuff, even when I fail.
I also love the idea of purging the old to welcome the new. For the past week I’ve fastidiously cleaned, hauling boxes and bags to Goodwill–several trips, actually. I’ve cleaned out my email, put my files in order, and set up my 2015 budget. I’ve made the kids help me get the yard in shape by bagging 1,279,379 leaves and pruning the plants. I’ve mopped, cleaned out cabinets, flipped mattresses and cleaned out my van.
I’ve also reviewed my daily routine, refining it and re-arranging it. I’ve set new goals for 2015 and have them recorded and ready to be reviewed and tracked.
I’m looking forward; I’m pushing forward hard. I’m afraid to not push forward hard.
I’m afraid of much, actually. A bit of foreboding, if you will. What if I fail? What if disaster, once again, ensues?
I started out writing this post to be funny. It’s not so funny any longer. Instead, it’s a bit challenging. And convicting. Why do I let fear so consume me? Why do I not trust…God–others–mostly God?
It’s been a good year. It has. Tremendously so. For all 5 of us. Six, counting Biscuit dog. Goodness, I am so proud of my crew. They continue to amaze me each and every day.
But, 2014 has not been without its challenges or heartaches or nightmares. It has not been without its sleepless nights, fear, illnesses, worry or pain. Ever present is the fight to avoid addiction, the fight to claw out of depression and the push to answer Jesus’ question in John 5:6 with a resounding “Yes.” Yep, it’s had its challenges. Mostly met challenges, but challenges nonetheless.
Just like every other year for every other human being. The challenges may be different for you, or for your spouse, or for your child, or for your neighbor, but we all face them.
Overall, though, it has been a very, very good year. I have so much to be thankful for. Way more to be thankful for, than to be grieved over. God’s grace has, once again wowed me. It always does.
But, I’m a bit fearful of 2015. Oh, that doesn’t mean I’m not looking forward to it or anticipating “watching what God will do” (as cross-stitch and horribly trite as that phrase sounds). I am….because I know Matthew 7:9-11 is truth. It has to be:
Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? 11 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!
My Father–the God of this universe, knows how to give good gifts to me, His child. The beautiful, the amazing, the joyful. But also the difficult gifts–gifts that are painful and hard-to-understand, much like shots are to a child. God is sovereign. I don’t understand that concept, do you hear me? I don’t understand the concept of His sovereignty!
But I’ve seen way to much in this life to not believe that it is true.
It is true….He is sovereign and He is the giver of all good gifts…and yet I am still a bit fearful. Experience has taught me to be so. This life has taught me to be so.
I just re-read this and it sounds like I’m planning for disaster. I guess this probably isn’t very encouraging for you, my dear reader. I should be telling you to “Go for it!” “Carpe Diem!” “You can achieve great things!” But, since I find all those phrases hollow and pathetic, you probably won’t hear them from me.
I’m not planning for disaster. I’m not, I truly am not. And, neither should you. Please, please don’t.
I guess what I’m trying to do, though, is to be realistic. And honest. And transparent. And to encourage you to do so as well. I’ll still anticipate the fresh start of a new year. I’ll still begin work on my new(ish) goals and tweaked routines. I’ll still dream big and fight to be more optimistic. I mean, who else puts “run a marathon” on their goal list EVERY SINGLE YEAR. And then proceeds to fail at being able to run around the block without dying EVERY SINGLE YEAR. Yep, this girl. Every year.
But, maybe I’ll also risk some new(ish) goals for 2015–such as trusting God more, whatever that looks like. I don’t even know how one quantifies that, except in that it means pursuing Him more feverishly and fervently.
Every. Single. Day. Relentlessly.
Whether I sense His presence or not. Whether my crew is doing well, or struggling. Whether I have a clean bill of health, or the Dr. report comes back with unwanted results. Whether we meet our financial obligations, or have to get even more creative at saving money.
Him, and Him only. Regardless.
And, maybe I’ll risk in other, unquantifiable (that’s not actually a word) ways as well. Stuff I can’t measure with a spreadsheet or chart, but stuff that is raw and messy and real. Stuff that matters eternally, though I don’t know what that “stuff” is right this moment. But I know it is coming. Because it always does. That is life. The opportunities are presented to us to care for others. Will we? Will I?
So, ok. 2015, let’s see what you’ve got. I think I’m ready. Are you, my friends?
***To end 2014, I’d like to thank you, my dear readers. I am so grateful for each and every one of you. It still absolutely, positively astounds me that anyone would be willing to read anything that I write here. 24,000 page views for 2014, from all over the world, according to my year-end report. That’s crazy. Absolutely insane. And, I’ve met some of the most amazing people who have contacted me through this website–from all over. So, Happy New Year, to each and every one of you! May you run a marathon this year, or, better yet, risk the beautiful, messy and bold things that God would bring your way.