Monday, January 2, 2017

'16 Going on '17

Happy New Year, my friends, and hello, 2017.

So, 2016. Not a bad year, eh?

He certainly did.  

We both turned 30 in 2016 and marked off two items from our bucket lists—a Celine Dion concert and a Browns’ football game in Cleveland. (See my 30th tribute to Howell.)

My best friend got married in March, and we took a couple’s trip to New York in July.

My WIP won first place in a contest this summer, and on Christmas Eve I found out I was accepted to present at a conference in March that I’ve been trying to get accepted to for several years.

I was promoted at work this fall, and the rest of the semester feels a bit like a blur, to be honest, as I spent the next few months learning the ropes. (I’m still learning! :) )

And we ended our year with a wonderful early Christmas present—the early arrival of my new nephew, Case.

My favorite thing about a new year is the pause it always gives me to sit and reflect.

For the last several years, God has given me a word for the year—and sometimes, through my dear friend Brandi. I’ve blogged about some of them before. 2012 my word was Favor. In 2013, Brave. 2014, Grace. 2015, Hope. 2016, Redeem.

I already know my word for 2017—Peace.

God continues to give me the verse, “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts.” That verse has been on my heart for a while—and apparently I still need it. :) 

I’m not big on resolutions. Probably I should work out. Probably I could lose another ten pounds.
But one thing I’ve got to resolve is to let God’s peace rule in my heart.

I can’t get overwhelmed with stress or the lists or the circumstances. I don’t have permission to do so.

As women, I’ve said before how much we influence the tone in our house. When our husbands come home, are we frantic or at peace? Are we distracted or honoring?

For me, the busier I felt this fall, the more frantic and distracted I became at home.

I’m thankful for my hubs who pursues my heart, regardless of my state of mind. But just because he does it so well doesn’t mean he should have to encounter a frantic wife every day.

I want to be a blessing to him. I want to be present—at home, at work, at lunch with friends.

I want to prioritize what matters—and for me, that’s always been people. God taught me that as I waded through grad school: the papers, the assignments, the stress, it’ll all pass away; but relationships are what matter in His kingdom.

I want to set the stress aside and not worry about what I cannot control.

So, 2017—bring on the peace!

How about you? 

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