Personal New Year and the Proper Perspective
Today is the “January 1st” of my 30th year.
Yesterday was my birthday. Twenty-nine years officially lived and completed. To God be the glory, for His safekeeping and His provision, for His grace and His mercy, for His unconditional love and His unfailing faithfulness.
About a month ago, as I reflected on (what was then) my (upcoming) birthday, I said, in true dramatic fashion, to one of my dearest friends,
“Ugh, what did I even do with my twenties?”
I was half-joking but wholly feeling unaccomplished. Instead of dismissing my comment she lovingly reminded me of the truth.
“What,” she laughed kindly. “You graduated from college. You moved to another state. You got married. You started a family and had a baby. You did a lot in your twenties.”
I smiled sheepishly, she was right.
Her honest redirection made me realize that I was looking through a tainted lens. The lens of desire.
Desire isn’t a bad thing.
In fact, desire can fuel a lot of good things, like creative ambition, setting and meeting goals, and it is certainly an ingredient to a healthy and lasting marriage. But left unchecked, desire can also breed discontentment.
A lens tainted by desire can sometimes blur the images of the wonderful things already present in our lives.
The reason for my comment, feeling unaccomplished, it was all the direct result of desiring more from where I was currently in my life.
Remembering that a Sovereign God was in control and that I was exactly where I was meant to be on my journey had been lost on me.
(Sidenote: It’s amazing the misconceptions that can be cleared up when people respond to the cries of our hearts with genuine patience and love.)
So yesterday, with the lesson that I was exactly where I’m supposed to be (in the palm of God’s hand) in mind, I chose to reflect on God’s goodness and the many blessings He has generously bestowed on me.
I deserve nothing.
And the right I have to my life and all the good things in it, is a gift in itself. A good and perfect gift from the Father of lights. (James 1:17)
The greatest gift I received in the last year is my son, Malachi. What an honor to partner with Danny and steward over Malachi’s life until he is old enough to steward himself.
That friend I mentioned earlier, let me tell you, she is full of beautiful encouragements! Yesterday she said my birthday meant that [God, by way of] my parents carried and protected me from the womb to adolescence and beyond so that I could “continue to build hope and love in this world” through Malachi, among some other sweet, sweet words (that I’ll keep just between us). Talk about putting things into the proper perspective!
If I needed a reminder that my life has meaning, that certainly was it. I am building hope and love in this world—a legacy—that I hope will remain long after I’m gone, through Malachi (and any future siblings). That is HUGE.
Of course you don’t have to be a biological parent to leave a legacy and make an impact on the world around you, but that is part of my unfolding story, from this birthday on.
I do not have any resolutions for this my personal new year. But I do have several intentions.
I intend to regularly check my specks to ensure the view of my life isn’t tainted by unchecked desire. I want to see correctly. I want to see me, the world, and my place in the world (daunting!), as God sees it.
I intend to be even more present in the full-length of life’s precious moments, savoring the full-length of every second. Whether it’s breastfeeding and cuddling with Malachi, or sharing a meal with a friend, that time is priceless. Time can never be regained or relived.
I intend to find joy and meet with Jesus in the mundane. Because the majority of life takes place in the ordinary and routine moments of everyday life, not in the grand events.
It’s not a long list, but it’s an important one.
I am starting this personal new year with an immense amount of gratitude. I’m thankful to God for all the growth I’ve had a chance to witness, in myself, but especially in those around me. (Malachi is 6 months! :insert whining emoji face: HOW!?)
God loves me! And He has placed some amazing people in my life who love me too. I am loved. I stand tall in that. (All 60 inches of me! lol)
To be loved and to have the ability to love is truly one of life’s greatest gifts.
It’s a beautiful life!
Grace and Peace,