It’s the second day of 2020.
And, like many, many others, this new year and all it entails is very much on my mind.
Last year I felt so unready to enter a new year. 2018 had been a tough one for me–a rather difficult pregnancy, starting homeschool while also caring for a newborn, Judah traveling several times a month for a few months in a row, and sickness upon sickness. I had experienced great joys, but also great disappointments in regards to my writing (specifically my book), and I had little motivation to continue to pursue publishing. Nothing I walked through was incredibly extreme, but I was overwhelmed, weary, emotionally raw, and very much feeling my weakness in every way.
At the end of every year, Judah and I talk over our goals for the upcoming year, and share our dreams with one another. When it was my turn to talk, I just started to cry. “I don’t have any dreams,” I sobbed. “It’s all I can do to just make it through the day right now… I just want to enjoy the kids and stay on top of laundry and dishes.” Judah, in one of his many moments of God-given wisdom, said, “Then don’t dream big. Just dream small.” And it was exactly what I needed to hear.
It became my theme for 2019. And boy, did God use that vision to give increased joy in the small moments of life. I had the ability to delight in sweeping floors and wiping counters. I felt the freedom to wait on emails and just enjoy the preciousness of my children at play. And as I look back on the fabric of last year, I’m amazed at what I see. As I simply did what He put before me, He was weaving something more intricate and beautiful than I could have imagined. In learning again the joys of daily faithfulness, God was preparing me to dream big again; not with my dreams, but with His. To let Him instill His vision in me, and simply take the next step when He says go.
This year, I’m entering a new year very differently than I entered 2019. As I was praying about and looking toward the next 12 months, I asked the Lord what His theme is for me this year. And He made it clear what it is:
I know that might seem rather cliché since I’m getting ready to launch a book called Expectant. But I am someone who tends to dwell on the past and dread the future. I sense the Lord gently urging me to keep my eyes wide open for what He is doing and going to do. That doesn’t mean this year will be filled only with thrilling things. It will certainly hold small trials, but may hold the most intense trials of my life… only God knows. What I do know, however, is that He has a grand eternal plan that is far beyond what I can comprehend, and that He has invited me into His mission to see His kingdom come on earth, whatever that may entail. He will continue to weave His masterpiece of redemption. And in this knowledge, I eagerly await all this year holds.
I don’t know what 2020 holds for you, either. You might be entering it like me, with excitement for what lies ahead. Or, you might be fighting dread, with the reminders of the sorrows and trials you endured in 2019. Whatever the case may be, know that God has a plan for your life far beyond what you can comprehend. He is inviting each and every one of His children to be a part of His incredible story. All He asks is that we trust Him and obey Him, because He is worthy of trust and obedience in every way. That obedience might mean doing something really radical like moving across the world. Or, it might mean just keeping the floors swept and children cared for. Let’s keep our eyes on Him, and He will be faithful to direct our paths for our good and His glory.