So 2007 is coming to a close and like every year I’ve been taking stock of my life this past year. Where it started, what happened, how I grew, goals I accomplished, and where I am now. I was reading over a quick blurb that I wrote last year at this time. It’s the things in my life I wanted to change and how I wanted to grow.
“I’m hoping in 2007 to work on things I’m not really happy with (being really shy and awkward around people I don’t know) and working towards a deeper understand in who Christ is and what he wants from me. I spent most of this year just figuring out that I still love him and coming to an understanding of what I actually believe. This coming year I want to wrap myself in his love and his word. My belief is strong but that’s where I feel it ends. “
I feel this is exactly what I had accomplished in 07. The year started off with a sermon by Rick McKinley about what he had learned on his time off from preaching and just meditating on God. What he said was such a simple truth that has stuck with me all year. He said “What I really got to focus on was the fact that God loves me… This thing really is about the love of God.”
And I heard this and it rang true with me. Something hit home and I said yes, God loves me. And it’s a complete duh moment. You smack yourself in forehead and say of course, it’s the truth behind the gospel. But somewhere in my walk with God, in this journey to a deeper understanding of how I’m supposed to be following in the shadow of Jesus, I lost this simple concept that God loves me. And that was a good place to start this year. Because if God loves me, no matter how much I screw up, no matter how much I hurt him by going forward and looking for approval elsewhere, then why should anything else matter. At the end of the day when everyone fails me, when life seems to come up short, God will be there, waiting to embrace me with his love. And if God loves me that way, then he must love everyone else that way too. So I go to the gospel of Matthew.
“Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.”
And it made such an impact on my life. It’s not a revolutionary concept but it was a base to start from and it was how I wanted to live my life. As a reminder I tattooed the verse on my arm, as a constant reminder of how to live my life.
I was able to find a church this year where I could plug into. It is a joy to be able to go to church again because I want to be there, not because I have to be there. I’ve meet some awesome people there and joined the worship team. It’s been a joy to go there.
The other standout moment this year was a friendship. Without getting into any personal details, it’s very nice and heartwarming to have someone that you can share meaningful conversation about spirituality with.I enjoyed the four months or so hat I had chance to dialogue with this person about our personal and spiritual struggles and it brought me joy to see them grow. I pray nothing but love and good things to this person, wherever life takes them next.
The past month I’ve really been learning to enjoy my relationships and friendships that I have now. I’ve spent all this week getting coffee and eating dinner with those closest to me and enjoying the company of others. I hope to continue this in 08. You never now how long someone will be alive or in your life and those relationship are precious and meaningful, if just for that moment in time you get to spend with them.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”