This hasn’t been our best year. Really. Financially, emotionally, relationally, a whole pile of “not our finest” moments. Yet… I’m convinced that years like 2014 are essential. They are the interruptions that make us better, they are not defining years, but they spur us on to better things and I’m grateful for my less than stellar year.
This past year has inspired me to:
1) Chase glory with uninterrupted passion. I don’t ever want to be complacent in seeking God’s face. 2014 was full of distractions and worries and painful realizations that seemed to freeze me in place at times. When I shook myself hard enough to move, I realized I was missing nothing but my Savior. No matter how small my faith might feel, I will not fail to stretch it all the way to the throne of God this year.
2) Chase truth with boldness. My non-confrontational personality will always try to convince me that being gentle with difficult people will keep me safe from uncomfortable conflict. It might, but it will also keep me away from resolution and joy. Truth has to be more important than my comfort. I can use gentle words, but they must be dripping with real truth.
3) Chase joy with right motives. I have been working on several creative projects that don’t seem to be coming together. I am realizing that I push them aside because I am not prioritizing things well. I typically order my mundane tasks above my creative because I see creativity as a reward. I shouldn’t do that. Order isn’t about what I like and dislike, it’s about what I’m called to and what I’m committed to. Until my energy lines up with Christ as my first love, others as my greatest opportunity and myself as a slave to the great commission God has gifted me to fulfill. Only then will joy reign in my life and in my home.
4) Chase Opportunity without fear. I see my weaknesses more clearly than anyone else. Those weaknesses scare me and often throw me into complacency with their obvious leanings toward failure. One word of doubt from someone else and I typically stop all pursuit of what could have been. I MUST close my ears to my own voice first and then that of others. Is God calling me to do something? If He is, than I am wrong to hesitate. Run toward that voice and it will all work out.
5) Chase friendship without calculation. Everyone I know has plus or minus points on their personality chalkboard. We each have temperaments that both compliment and discourage those around us. I so often consider the compatibility of others before I consider the calling of friendship. Not to say I grade my friends (I’m sure I have, but it isn’t a constant check list of pros and cons), but I grade myself in their lives and I see myself as lacking. I don’t EVER feel that I contribute as much as I benefit. Because of that, I tend to see myself as “in the red” in most relationships and I back away quietly. I want to do better. I want to consider where God has placed me and who He has placed around me, and more vulnerably embrace the people who have never let me get too far away. These are treasures I have yet to dig into and adventures I have yet to explore.
I’m sure there are more things I need to chase in 2015, but these five are what stand out to me.
I didn’t list prayer, Bible reading, exercise, eating right or any other disciplines, physical, spiritual or otherwise, because they are naturally occurring benefits of chasing these things above. If I’m not doing them…I have one of these goals out of whack.
Goodbye 2014, I won’t miss you, but I’m glad you came along.