A week ago I turned 26, and in good introspective fashion, I took the opportunity to reflect on the fullness of the past year. 25 brought a year of internships, a new nephew, graduation, buying a house, celebrating our wedding and the wedding of several dear friends, honeymooning, getting our first pooch, new jobs, friends moving to follow their dreams, growing with new friends, deeper involvement in our church, and a whole slew of other daily adventures. 25 was a full year, and a year full of blessings, to say the least. And as I begin 26, I’m blessed with a season of rest, blessed with time to take in all God has done in the past year, to read the books that I’ve checked out time and time again from the library but never actual get to, to pray intentionally, to run, to discover new passions, and to spend time with dear friends.
As I’ve met with several friends, I can’t help but chuckle at the themes that keep popping up: I sit with one friend celebrating the advance in his career (not job, but career!), another glowing as she expects her first child, another rejoicing at the opportunity to finally do what she loves (and get paid for it to boot!), another discouraged as she longs for a baby, another scurrying over last minute plans before heading overseas to do missions, discussions of insurance and mortgages, of growing families and dreams. I sit back and chuckle, asking “When did we all grow up?”. No longer are our conversations of a far off future but of the here and now, and of the soon to come. Somehow we’ve aged that our far off dreams have turned to planning and praying. And once again I stand amazed by God’s perfect plan.
I’m amazed as I see Him do the impossible day by day, amazed as I watch prayers get answered. And I stand in full anticipation as to what God has planned for my life, for our lives. My life has not at all turned out how I had planned, and I thank God for that. I praise Him for saying no to my plans that He may give me something better. And in this period of waiting, I fully anticipate Him to do great things. This year, I’m daring not to dream big, but to faith big, daring to say yes to God the first time rather than relying on my own understanding of all of the little details. This year I long to say yes, to dive fully into whatever God has for me, to trust Him with abandon. I pray that He would continue to lead and guide us for His name sake, to show us how we can use what He’s given us to draw others closer to him, and to strip away anything that would distract us from Him. I pray this is the year of 26 yeses, and then even more as God leads and directs. This is the year I pray for discernment and courage to take the first step, walking in the light of God’s leading lamp. And it’s the year that I invite you to do the same.