2009 is a year that I will remember….

… for a long time to come.

It has been a big year of transition for us as we moved from Texas to Florida, but personally it has been a year of lessons learned about the workings of God in my life and how He uses each of us (through all of our faults) to make a difference in His work on this earth.

A lot of my lessons learned in 2009 have also helped me shape some goals for 2010.  The good thing about writing them down is that they also hold me accountable.  So here goes….

In 2010, I want to be:

  • Less judgmental of others both in my words and in my thoughts.  Even though I was raised knowing and understanding verses such as “Judge not, or you will be judged (Matthew 7:1) and “Let him who has no sin cast the first stone.” (John 8:7), I also live in a society where judging and condemning others is way too acceptable.  The older I get and the more mistakes I make in life, I realize that if these verses are the standard by which I live, then I need to focus my thoughts on giving grace and forgiveness to others rather than judging others or their deeds.
  • More affectionate with my family. My girls are both in middle school this year, and next year one of them moves on to high school.  I am blessed in that they are still very affectionate girls.  They love to snuggle on the couch with their Daddy and watch NCIS or run into his arms when he comes home at night.  As they have grown older some of the snuggly love has gone away, but not totally.  I know someday it will.  For now I need to make sure that my other priorities don’t get in the way of spending time with my family and letting them know that I really love them.
  • More focused on discovering how God wants to use my life. This year more than others, I realize that my prayers have been for specific actions that I feel I need, or want, God to take.  “Lord, please help our house sell or please let the kids find friends in their new school or please heal a sick friend.”  But as I’ve studied the characters in the Old Testament, Moses (and Sarah), Ruth and Boaz (and Naomi), Joseph (an his brothers) and David, one thing pops out about every story to me.  God had a big picture plan for each of their lives that changed the world.  He used each of them (even through the speed bumps of their sinful actions) to make a heavenly impact on earth.  And each of their individual stories has an abundance of personal blessings as a result.

This year I want my prayers to be more focused on finding God’s direction for my life than satisfying my immediate needs and desires.  I do believe that God cares deeply about my day-to-day needs (and desires), but I have to wonder if He is just waiting for my faith to grow enough so I will move beyond my day to day worries and will trust Him to take care of them as a part of the “big picture” Will He has for my life.

In a Twitter post this morning, Kay Warren shared: “Renewal is rooted in faith, not in resolutions.  I cannot make a new me or a new you, but Christ can make you new and me new.  – Frank Harrington

While 2009 has been a year of personal challenges for me, in the end, it is a year for which I am very thankful.  I have moved from working 50 to 60 hours a week to serving as a stay at home mom.  While I still hate housework, I love the time I have to spend time with God everyday and to get a decent level of exercise.  I’ve lost about 20 lbs. since I’ve left Texas and am just about down to my pre-baby weight!  I usually get a 5-mile walk in each day.  I also try to spend a few days a week with Jillian Michaels.  I’m still working on having positive thoughts about those experiences. 🙂

Wherever your New Year finds you, I pray that you know that you have a God that loves you unconditionally, separate and apart from what you feel about yourself or how others see you.  And for each and every one of us, God has a big picture plan of how He’d like to use both you and me for His heavenly purpose on earth.  If we just have the faith to let Him.

Happy New Year!

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