I'm always surprised at how many people online say they're so glad to bid good riddance to the last *&^%$ year.
Seldom have I ever felt that way.
I mean, when you put much concentration into adding wonder and creativity to each day--and if you wrap together all those 365 wonder-full, creative days in a bag--well, that's one special sack. A collection of awesome memories and lessons.
Now, you'd think that I would be singing praises that 2010 is over, wouldn't you? After all, this was the year Tom lost his job for the first time in all our 32 years of marriage. (Oh, the changes that single episode has brought!) And our 30-year-old daughter moved back in with us. And the summer was hot and humid and keeping up with the lawn was, well, nightmarish. And Tom's sister had breast cancer and two lung embolisms and our brother-in-law has Parkinson's. And my sister's young daughter-in-law came down with cancer. And --
But you know? Every year brings its own problems. You simply cannot experience a year without any--it's impossible.
So I say, why complain? Why wish a year away? That's too much like wishing all of Life away, because that is Life, you know. Life automatically comes with dire times.
But oh, Life comes with much joy, too, especially on the inside where God dwells with us.
I do not have to feel blown away during hard times just because that's how other people react. Nothing, no one, forces me to feel a certain way. My feelings are my choice--as long as I keep my head and my faith. As long as I allow God to grow me up during daily lessons in areas of discipline. Trust. Patience.
Oh, the lessons each day brings--what strength they leave with me to face others in 2011. My lessons of 2010 felt tougher, more like graduate school, maybe, and I was stretched to some shining, new places. To deeper levels of trust, certainly. God's lessons enable me to keep my joy, and thus, my strength, and oh, the immeasurable value of those.
On this New Year's Eve I hope you, too, are counting your blessings--and your valuable lessons. And just think... a new year! Lots more opportunities to do and be better. Love that.
Yesterday Tom and I finally watched the movie, Ramona and Beezus. We both loved it. Wasn't as great as the books, but close. :)
"The joy of the Lord is my strength." ... Neh. 8:10