How was your countdown last night, dear one? In those final moments of 2013 - those 5-4-3-2-1 moments, what were you thinking? What were you feeling? Were you making resolutions? Were you excited at the prospect of a kiss or a hug? Were you in the warmth of a home or in the heat of a crowded dance floor? Did you whisper a prayer of hope or shout a cry for help?
New Years seem to be all about resolutions - what's your new year's resolution this year? I have been a perpetual cycle of "lose weight," "get healthy," "eat less fried food," and the list goes on and on and on. For most of my adult life I could be counted as one of those crazed women who ran to the gym for that shiny, new membership to FINALLY get fit! Only to stop going with such intensity about one month in and then stop going altogether at about month marker three.
So as 2013 drew to a close this December I began to think about what my resolution would be this year - what dutiful promise was I going to make to myself and spout to the world, to only awkwardly manufacture lousy justifications as to why I left said resolution crying for help in the dust as I made strawberry cupcakes in my stretchy pants?
I began to think about 2013 in a review-like fashion and considered what it had done to my heart and how that might reflect my upcoming resolutions . . . Here's what I came up with.
2013 was probably one of the most, if not THE most, life changing years of my life. I slugged through valleys that I had never even imagined before; I made myself vulnerable to a group of people I barely knew; I let my heart hang out outside of my body and stood by and watched as it got scratched and ripped and tattered; I gave my body to men who didn't deserve it; I got a job that will be my career; I get paid to write; I made new friends; I'm moving out, on my own; I stood up for myself; I gave my heart to the Lord.
So as a result of all the changes, in honor of this transformed heart of mine, I resolve to make my year of 2014 about one word - rejoice. I will stop letting the weight of everything I don't have in my life keep me down and I will begin to wake up every morning filled with the promise of a new day and everything that I have been given.
I resolve to stop talking about what I'm going to start doing and begin to stop doing some things . . .
In 2014 -
I will stop deciding what the perfect jean size or scale weight is and just be happy in my skin.
I will stop listening to the enemy when he tells me I'm going to be alone forever, that I don't deserve anything, that I might fail and just remember that my Father has never failed and He won't fail now.
I will stop procrastinating on writing and just put my hind-end in the chair and my fingertips to the keys.
I will stop saying I'm going to learn to play the banjo, learn another language, submit work for publication, run a mile without stopping and just actually learn, submit, run.
I will stop being too tired to rise earlier in the morning to spend time with Jesus and just get up.
I will stop remembering all the hurtful things that have been said to me, the relationships that went wrong, the number of years it's been since I've had a boyfriend and just fling affection to all - no matter if it's reciprocated.
I will stop the fat talk, the put downs, the picking apart and just pray that I can begin to see myself the way God does.
I will stop worrying so much and just pray more.
I will stop defining myself by these culture's standards, by what my friends have accomplished, by where I think I need to be at 26, 27 and just be still.
In 2014 -
I will be a little more kind, I will laugh a little louder, I will push myself off the cliff of my comfort zone, I will REJOICE.
Here's knowing ya, 2013 - thank you for rocking my boat, breaking me down, shifting the plates of this heart, and filling me with skyward bound whimsy.
And here's to you, 2014 - to praying more, learning to cook, following through, and living much, much more encouraged, inspired, louder . . .
because I said I would.