Twenty. Four. Teen.
What a year it has been.
The most important lesson that I have learned this year is that it is up to me, not my circumstances or situations, to determine the significance of any event.
On Sunday in Church, my pastor asked "Who had a great year?". Mine was one of the first hands up. Sitting in my seat, there was almost no way I could keep my hand down after all God has done for me.
I began to review my year in my head and then I came to the realization that my "great year" started the 2nd week of September. For the first 8.5 months of the year I was living in Struggle City. Somehow though, by the time we got to the last Sunday of the month, 3.5 months were able to completely wipe away all of the difficulties of the first 8.5 . That blew my mind.
Then I realized that I did that. I chose to allow the good times to hold more weight than the not so good ones, and that is the most important decision I could have ever made for myself.
By no means were September to December easy; the loss, anxiety, stress and sadness that I experienced were at times more than I thought I could handle, but my mind was changed. I was determined to learn from every difficulty.
There are many smaller lessons that I've learned through the hard times, but the biggest thing I've learned is to learn the lesson. I don't know how many times I've heard "if you change your mind, you will change your life", but I believe it.
Loss, stress, anxiety, sadness, depression, hurt, failure, exclusion, isolation: these are all things that can be really difficult to endure, but you determine what they mean. My desire is that as we go into 2015, we change our thinking.
Loss taught me to appreciate what I do have. Stress taught me coping mechanisms. Anxiety taught me to be open and honest. Sadness sparked a new desire for resilience. Depression birthed this blog. Hurt strengthened my ability to love. Failure repositioned me. Exclusion taught me that I have who I need. Isolation allowed me to focus.
Nothing is wasted.
Happy 2015 y'all. Thank you for being part of my year, I love you.
Grace and Peace,