My youngest daughter just turned 20! I wish that I could play the entire movie of those 20 years in my head in slow motion. Milestones like this have a way of working into my soul and causing a tremendous amount of reflection. I admit that I may reflect on the past a little too much at times. However, my reflection is not through a melancholy spirit but through a grateful heart. My life has been blessed! Happy, sad, tragic, incredible, marvelous, fantastic, difficult, rewarding, frightening, frustrating; all of it a blessing. Certainly there are regrets. I remember as a girl of 10 or so years I would always say that my one goal in life was to live with no regrets. Well, I had no idea at the time how impossible that would be. I am learning, even at my age, that my regrets are what have developed some of my strongest character qualities. My regrets have also helped me learn about forgiveness on a deeper level. Forgiveness…. just the thought brings me to a pause. I am so thankful that forgiveness is woven into my belief system in such a powerful manner. I am so thankful that my God embraces me when I come to Him with my sincere apologies of a day or a moment gone wrong. I am so thankful that my parents showered me with forgiveness so that I would understand my God being so forgiving. I am so thankful that my two daughters have messed up a few times so that I could shower them with forgiveness and unconditional love as well. We all need to know what it feels like for our dirty, sinful soul to be made as white as the new fallen snow.
In preparation for the new year I am replaying my movie of 2014. There are moments that I would love to fast forward through and never think about again, moments that I would love to stop and savor, moments I would love to pretend never happened, and moments I would love to happen over and over. I love words and I love to write. There are so many times that I wish I could write out a script of my life so that I could think through every word and erase and re-write my words and actions before I actually spoke or acted. That would be amazing! But life isn’t scripted is it. Truly what develops our character and then gives us an opportunity to show how much we have grown is the necessity to act and react with each new moment.
I used to be a huge fan of new year’s resolutions. Every year at our church when I was a child we would have a new year’s party and then we would spend some time alone in the sanctuary in prayer. We were to reflect on the ending year and think about what God would want from us in the year to come. As a young girl I took this very seriously. I made my list and I thought of it often. Then, when I grew up, my resolutions turned into things like: lose weight, be more patient, exercise, eat healthy, ugh stuff. Now I’m not saying those are bad resolutions. It’s just not for me any more.
I’m going back to my childhood and really doing some major soul searching. I invite you to join me. Most of the time I invite you to sit with me on my imaginary porch and talk through these things with me. But not today. I have to do this on my own and so do you. What does God want from me….and from you in 2015? My desire is for God to write my script. I bet yours is too. This post is ending as I continue pondering my answer to this question. This one is going to take prayer, honesty, and courage. I know my answer will not be perfect and neither will yours. But I firmly believe with all my heart that God blesses our earnest efforts to follow Him. I will do my best on the first day of 2015 to share honestly what God has laid on my heart.