- Kick 2020 to the curb. Check.
- Ring in the new year. Check.
- Make new year’s resolutions. Check.
- Begin new endeavors: running, purging stuff, budgeting, clean eating, etc.. Check.
Fresh starts are great. We imagine a better version of ourselves, our families, our lives. We make lofty goals. We want to believe we will be different this year. Thankfully, as we mature in life and in Christ, we are different this year.
Would you mind sharing what’s on your mind this particular New Year’s Day?
- What word would you use to describe 2020? It felt different to each of us. Was it painful, frightening? freeing? restful?
- In what ways have you seen God mature you in 2020?
- In what ways do you want to grow or improve in 2021?
I think the word I would use to describe 2020 is unpredictable. And not just in the events that occurred that we wouldn’t have imagined in our wildest dreams or nightmares. Obviously no one predicted COVID-19, apocalyptic hail, or the Iowa derecho that devastated our community.
How different people responded so differently to those events was also extremely unpredictable. Including me. In addition to everything else, 2020 was also the year my twin daughters left home to go to college out of state, an event I had been dreading—for, well, 18 years. And I survived that loss and many others. God, in His mercy, allowed me to feel untethered from the people and things on which I used to rely for stability and significance. I’m pleased to say that by the grace of God this was a year for me of unpredictable peace and surprising resilience.
One way I want to improve in 2021 is in consistency. I want my spiritual rhythms and my growth in following Jesus to be consistent—not a series of starts and stops all year long. I want to consistently and creatively invest in the relationships that matter most to me, starting with my marriage and extending to my kids and the rest of my community. And although our family typically starts a new year doing Whole30, I want to be consistent throughout the year that in all things, even caring for our health we do it to the glory of God.
So how about you? How would you answer the above questions? I would love to hear your thoughts! And please take a few moments in your family to process these ideas. Even in a pandemic we are allowed to have hopes and dreams and aspirations. To ponder what the Lord has done and to prayerfully dedicate this next year to Him.
“And He who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also He said, ‘Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true’” (Revelation 21:5).
May your family have a truly joyful New Year, whatever it may bring.