After an extensive blogging break, I cannot help but look back on the many highs and lows of 2017. Some of my closer friends and family will agree–2017 held many burdens much too heavy for our shoulders to carry alone.
Our second son transitioned into adulthood well, accepted a great work position, and moved away earlier this year. Then, our third oldest also transitioned into adulthood, furthering his education, and now travels overseas. Yes, our nest is emptier and there was nothing greater than having everyone home for Thanksgiving! How good it was, every meal, every conversation, every hug–I will cherish the memories all year long. Not long after, in all the festivities of our granddaughter’s first birthday, we also found out we will be grandparents again by our eldest and his wife this July!
(Am I really that old already?)
My dear friend Wanda lost her battle with cancer last year–but not after a heroic fight. Who knew that kale, green apple, chard, beet greens, alfalfa sprouts, and green lettuce could make so much juice? She and her closest local friends, quickly learned it did and day after day, she faithfully chugged her concoction and persevered through quite a rigorous protocol. We prayed for her and her family deeply–laboring alongside of each other until our sister went home to Jesus in June. Grief weighed heavy for months, as well as the loss of friendship with her. Since her passing, fun monthly lunches developed with a group of these same local friends–I now know them as my Journey Mates.
The ups and downs of my closer relationships in 2017 had kept me heavily committed to asking, seeking, and knocking on God’s door in prayer. I had learned a lot about myself as a wife, a mother, as a family member, as a friend, and as a writer. I grew in understanding about where my boundaries had to fall as a wife, mother of adults, teens, grade-schoolers, a daughter, and a friend. I realized the power of God’s joy in the midst of disappointment, affliction, rejection, and tears. I continued to learn who God had created me to be and who I was not–God truly does allow our boundary lines to fall in healthy places! I began to learn how to let go of good things like s u g a r and a few relationships, to shore up the ones I must grow with in the future. It wasn’t easy, especially when all I wanted to do was hang on tight to a yummy, safe, and familiar routine. Instead, I’ve chosen to trade them for something far greater–more belief, faith, and trust on the road God has for me as a writer.
I would imagine that neither you nor I, are the same people we were when 2017 began. I’m ok with that–aren’t you? I’m ready to let go of the past and embrace the unknown. So here’s to a new year, new possibilities, new opportunities for growth, and a more joy filled 2018. May you, my reader friend, be blessed beyond measure from the One whom all blessings flow this year!
Thank you for reading my blogs–I hope they bless you richly!