Whether you believe in New Year’s resolutions or not, there is something about a fresh new year that makes you look back at the year that was. With that in mind here are just a few things that 2014 taught me that will probably impact my life forever:
1. Patience. This one seems to be a reoccurring lesson from year to year. I also have a feeling that I will be learning this one again in 2015. Patience with God and His timing is difficult because one of the hardest things for me (and a lot of us) to do is wait. But then God always work things out the way they ought to and the timing is always better than what we envisioned. Learning to wait on God also prepares us to be more patient with ourselves and others.
2. I have also learned to be more open about the struggles I face and not let my pride prevent me from “being real” with the people around me. I know that I cannot be perfect and that I will never have it all together and I know that I cannot fool others into thinking that I do. Nevertheless, a part of me wants to try. This makes me afraid to say that I am not ok and reluctant to say when I need help. 2014 had its fair share of financial, emotional and spiritual battles. With that came opportunities for me to reach out to others when I felt as though all I was bottling up inside was about to explode.
3. Balance. Making time to do the things I need to, want to and should do is not always easy. I have a tendency to want to volunteer myself to do a lot of things at a time. Although the desire to be involved is not a bad thing, it is so important to make time for yourself to do the things you enjoy. Being actively involved in ministry is great but God’s work should never burn us out. We need to take the time to do things that energize and refresh our mind, body and soul so that we can better return to those duties that await us.
4. I have experienced God’s Grace in my life in such real ways this past year. Yes, I know what Grace is but it is something else to really and truly experience it. I have allowed my soul to starve from the Word of God and I have strayed from the Presence of God. I have realized that there is so much sin and evil in my heart but yet still after every hiatus God welcomes me back; without punishment, without judgment. Oh what Grace is this?! Earthly relationships teach us to forgive but not forget, to have to “rebuild” trust after you have been wronged and work on getting back to a certain level in a relationship before the lack of faithfulness. Yet, God, the maker of the Universe and everything in it welcomes back this poor sinner as His own each time, without question. Oh what Grace this is!!!
Needless to say these are just a few of the lessons I’ve learnt in the past 365 day “dot” of my life. Lessons that I’ll probably continue to learn. That were not just part of a year isolated from the rest of my life but that continue to grow and mature me in my faith and in many other areas of my life today.
As for this year, I look forward to what God has in store for me. I know there will be a lot of changes, some that I am prepared for, others that will take my faith off guard. One thing I can be sure of is that just as God was faithful in the past so He will continue to be.