thanks for your patience with me as i’ve been noticeably absent the last month or so. i hate that my blog has taken a back seat so drastically, because if for no other reason, it is always encouraging for me to go back and look over what God has done in my life. I was especially encouraged a few weeks ago to look back and see an overview of what God did in the past few years.
So, keeping up with the tradition, here is a brief overview of 2009…
The year started off on a very low note – with me working through some very difficult issues from my past and having to face some personal heartache that I would have much rather left buried. Thanks to the help of Matt and Julie and many others from my church, I continued to learn what forgiveness looked like, but not without many tears.
That struggle began several months of discouragement and at times hopelessness. Looking back now, I am so grateful for my friends who stuck with me, upheld me, and encouraged me each step of the way… and at times, did everything necessary to turn my gaze off myself and back to the hope found in the cross.
I learned through that time, that my safety and comfort must be found in Jesus alone. That though others disappoint, and at times cause severe hurt and pain, that Jesus never fails. I learned that like Eustace, in the Voyage of the Dawn Treader, that at times God strips away ourselves, but it is always done with a hand of love and mercy.
2009 also was a year in which I started to see my health improve. This year brought for the first time in years the first consistent season of sleeping normally and the first period of weeks with no migraines. I’m grateful to God for the help of the doctors and others, but ultimately, for His hand guiding my health and my life.
then began a season of questions… should i remain at my job? where should I live? should I pursue moving to another state? if so, where? i began pursuing a long-standing desire… to move to the Washington DC area… for months, I investigated, prayed and talked with people. By late spring, I felt a peace about pursuing it and by mid summer I was convinced I was moving… as soon as God provided a job. I spent 10 days in the DC area on a fact finding mission, found a place to live, spent hours driving in traffic and was excited about the pending change. Then God closed the door. It was clear to me that the door was closed tight and that I was not to pursue any further. Yet it was also abundantly clear that this change was for my good and was given to me by a God who knows what is best for me. So, my roots are in Greenville. But my hope in God grew through that time, and though the “move” was unsuccessful, the lessons learned were well worth the months of questioning.
This fall brought changes once again to my life. September 13th was my first date with Ted Riley, a man whom I have since grown to love. We met in August via e-harmony and i am grateful for how God (not merely 29 dimensions of compatibility) brought the two of us together. I could not imagine a better fit for me and look forward to seeing what God does with our relationship.
The past 4 months have been times of continuing improved health (despite the doctors telling me in August that they thought I could have pancreatic cancer) and new areas of learning to trust God. Contentment looks different in this season (not “is there even possibly a good guy out there who would like me?” but “when will I get married / when will I have kids / when does the next “season” start?”) but the struggle remains the same… so I keep learning that no matter the circumstance, that my confidence and hope must be in the only One who remains unchanging.
In October, I began writing weekly online devotionals for Devotional Christian. It has been an encouraging and challenging step for me… in learning to be more thoughful about what I write and growing in being more theologically informed.
I’ve seen reconciliation in relationships this year. I’ve seen improvement in health. I’ve seen new changes. But through it all, I’ve learned more of the faithfulness of our God. Through every change, He has remained true to me. And through every time I haven’t remained true to Him, He lovingly corrects and draws me back.
What a God we serve. I look forward to the challenges and blessings of 2010, confident that through every step, He will be by my side.