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An Honest Account of Love, Grief and Walking With God
Finding God's Goodness in Life's Disappointments

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Reflecting and Learning

As I look back at 2010, I have concluded it has been the hardest year of my life in many ways, and yet a year of intense learning. 2010 was a year of walking with God in the extremes of life, but isn’t that what life is all about? It is not the destination but the journey that counts. I look at the tears I shed in 2010, and know God holds them and will one day turn all of them to joy. I guess the fact that I am still learning many things at 51 is a good sign I still have some life in me. In order not to reflect on the difficulty of the year, I have chosen to look at some of the things I have accomplished and learned:

-I have learned to depend on God as my husband, and learned to single parent with Him. Although Price thinks he is grown, he still is not totally on his own and needs parenting!
-I have learned to make many of the financial decisions that Joe made.

- I have learned to let go of a lot of things, and to hold on to everything loosely: kids, parents, coworkers, dreams and “the way it should have been.” Seasons come and seasons go and God is Lord of them all - His ways are perfect and He is good.

-I have learned to look at everything through the lens of God’s goodness. I’ve learned to thank God more this year than in years past. In the middle of all the loss and pain I have much to be thankful for.

-I love my long time friends but have made new friends this year that are single and have enjoyed the new relationships, knowing that God in his goodness is in all of them. I have a friend that is single and we share a lot of life together. I have another friend that is about my age and dating, and I have enjoyed her friendship and sharing stories. My married friends can’t really share that with me, although I have a number of people that have said they are living vicariously through me! I have learned to date as a middle-aged woman and I have enjoyed the adventure and freedom of single life. I can’t say I would like to stay in it very long, as I loved married life. I have learned to swing dance in 2010 and will keep dancing through my life.

-I have also learned how to be the mother of a bride and go through a major life event as a single woman. Mallory’s wedding was one of the highlights of the year for me. It was so much fun.

-I have learned how to press through depressing feelings and not live in my feelings. I have learned to keep contending for the peace and joy that are mine as a child of God.

-I have learned to keep pursuing my dreams even when I feel I have lost everything that really matters in life and my life cheerleader. Joe believed in me and saw my potential and always cheered me on; he was never threatened by God’s call on my life.

-I have learned how loved I am by my community. Most of all, I have learned that I am stronger than I think I am and much more capable than I ever thought. In the last few days of 2010, I felt the Lord say to me that He was my SUSTAINER. I looked the word up to find the meaning and found this: sustain- to keep up, keep going, maintain, prolong, to favor. Truly God is my sustainer! I totally depend on those words in 2011. Today I read Isaiah 46: 3-4. “You whom I have held since you were conceived and have carried you since your birth. Even in your old age and gray hairs I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you. I will sustain you and will rescue you.” What a promise for me! Then I read Psalms 146:9: ”He sustains the fatherless and the widow.” Yes, He is my sustainer and if anything is accomplished in 2011, I know it will be Him and not me. I have come to the conclusion that it is in the difficult seasons of life that we really get to see the face of God like never before and know Him in a deeper way. 


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