The wind is blowing against the window wanting to be let in from the icy cold and the resolutions are in full swing as January is officially making its entrance. There is nothing quite like the New Year for me. Maybe it is the joy of new beginnings or the optimism that seems to be accompanied with them, but there is something that just makes me feel so hopeful. And with this year rolling in, it is the same thing, however with that hopefulness has come some great reflecting because you see, the New Year isn’t about just building over the old.
As I was looking back at this year, there was such joy and sweet memories that came along with it. It was a year of renewed life and strength. There were some patterns that seemed to unfold as this year kept scooting along, and while there was much growth with some incredible people around me to come alongside and lift me up, I had been too busy trying to hold them all at arms length.
Relationships and community is something that I am extremely passionate about, it is what I believe we were all made for. We were made to connect and love with a kind of love that only Jesus can give. It is a love that is unwavering and strong. It does not give in tiny portions but instead it is overwhelming with its power. I believe all of that to the depths of my being but my life had not been reflecting that. I have been living in fear of rejection and abandonment thinking I was just protecting myself but what I learned rather quickly is that fear does not prevent disappointment. It does not prevent the lies telling me that I am unworthy of friendship or that I will be alone, but what it does prevent is that feeling of connection. Yes, maybe it puts the rejection rate down to a minimum but with that comes isolation. Maybe not so much physical isolation but what does it really matter who’s around you if you’re not going to let them in? What I learned is this; I was living my day in and day out, without being fully known by much of anyone.
I am not saying that there weren’t stories and pasts and regrets shared but what wasn’t shared on my part is the vulnerability you feel when you trust that person’s love for you. You open yourself up to them, quirks and all and allow them to say no. That is connection. It is giving yourself permission to hurt when the disappointment is on the table instead of hiding it as if it wasn’t painful. Deep connection with others is letting you claim yourself worthy not because that person said so but because God made you for it. I had to look and reflect and really ask myself, am I okay with me? Because when it’s just God, and me all by ourselves in the solitude of my thoughts and His truth which one have I been grasping onto?
I had been clinging to the lies that it’s okay to not fully trust because then maybe I won’t feel that hurt. I had been saying it’d be easier on myself later on; I’m protecting myself from feeling pain, right?
I decided I am going to start claiming truth over this year instead. I am going to start believing that the people that God has specifically placed in my life are there for a reason and I am more than worthy of the adventure that will come being with them. I am going to share my triumphs and my insecurities and all that is in between and let them say yes. I am not going to stop being afraid of sadness or disappointment and instead embrace all the seasons that this crazy life brings because without the bad; how can we fully be grateful for the good? I am going to live in the protection and security of the only One who can truly provide for me and rest. No more will my life be controlled by the doing of what’s normal and safe but instead by the unknown and wild.