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I don’t typically make any New Year’s resolutions because I have a horrible track record of forgetting what they are by February. I do, however, spend some time reflecting on all my experiences in the past year.
There is value in taking a look at all the changes we’ve undergone and remembering some of the things God taught us along the way. It’s easy to point out all the things we’d rather forget, but sometimes the hardships are our greatest blessings.
This past year in particular carried a lot of weight for me as far as major life steps. The year of 2013 was perhaps the most event-filled year in my life so far. While it was filled with trials and triumphs alike, I see on all those the fingerprints of God.
I love to look back and see how God worked in events and circumstances throughout the year to bring me to the place I am today. They aren’t random bits and pieces of life, but part of the continuous journey God has me on.
It’s interesting to see how individual events play out in the grand scheme of things, and it brings the comfort of seeing God’s handiwork in my life. We don’t wander through life alone and without guidance no matter how lost or lonely we might feel. We might struggle, but we are also refined by fire.
The biggest journey God had me on in 2013 involved relationships. God stretched my comfort zones and brought new people into my life who have played extremely important roles in my growth as a person and as a child of God.
When I look back in the journal I started writing last January (a New Year’s resolution I failed to keep), I mentioned a few things I desired from the new year. One of those was engagement.
I went from a breakup in January with the man I thought I would marry to a proposal by a different man in December. It amazes me that I wrote that statement from completely different circumstances, but God took that desire for marriage and orchestrated events in my life just right so that the timing to move toward marriage was perfect. It was a long, hard road, but it is one of my most cherished journeys.
My boyfriend proposed on Dec. 21, and it’s a story I’ll be sharing with Boundless soon!
In 2013 I also went from juggling two to three part-time jobs at once to blogging for Boundless and landing the perfect full-time job. I bought my first car.
I learned even more the importance of seeking God’s will and listening for where He might be leading. I learned patience, and I learned to trust God and His plan for me. I also came to realize how important it is to trust God even when odds are against you, and it seems like things won’t work out.
When I reflect on the year from beginning to end, I don’t really remember the trials. I see the fruits of the year. I see how God used different experiences to shape me and to teach me things and to move me into His best for me.
What lessons did you learn in 2013? What trials did you face that you’re actually grateful for in hindsight? What dreams came true?
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--What lessons did I learn in 2013? I learned not to put limits on what I thought God could (or would) do in my life. I had two major opportunities (completely unrelated to each other) to step out in faith even though I had NO idea what would happen in either instance. What did happen was FAR beyond what I could have imagined!
Oh, and congrats, Amy!
--I learned that being willing to put aside my plans for the ones God has for me is the best choice. 2013 didn't look anything like I thought it would, but following God's plans for me made for a better year than I could have planned myself.
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