Moving on to 2019

Oh what a year 2018 has been! I call it the year of pruning. 2017 was a tough year for us personally, but God showed Himself so faithful, loving, and kind -- true to His name and nature. This year I learned that He is on the throne. I have learned why I do not have to fear and ultimately that I can trust Him.

I lost my dream job in 2017, the job I worked so hard to get, because of downsizing. It wasn't because of my work performance and it wasn't personal, just business. It shook me to the core. My identity became cloudy and I felt paralyzed by fear. I could not believe the rush of it all, and I panicked. When your faith gets tested, you really learn a lot about yourself. During that time I realized I did not know God as well as I thought I did.

I felt like He was far away, I felt like He took everything away from me. I laugh at that now because I still had so much, we had a home, family, friends, our church. I was not alone, but the lies of the enemy kept getting louder in my head. I would have good days, then bad days that consisted of crying and doubting.

2017 was a year of learning how to breathe in fresh air, it felt like I was breathing in God's breath. The only way I can describe it is as me walking on air, but still feeling like I was walking on something grounded: the Lord. He became my true foundation and He become my hope.

I did not lean on my own understanding, I did not fight for my own way, I sought the Lord more than ever and learned of His true character. Me and Him, it was time to check the inventory of my heart. I thank God for 2017, I truly do. I am so thankful for the trials and tribulations because I got to know my God, my Jehovah Solemn.

With full trust in God and full surrender of my plans and dreams, God brought me back into the zone of dreaming again. For a time I had stopped, because I felt like everything was taken away, but God reminded me that He is always doing something new, and that I have a lot to offer.

2018 was the year of things new. New church, new job, new friends, and new lifestyle. I had to make new choices this year, on things that were once naturally set before. This year I learned that there is always more that God has for us; I shouldn't just settle.

I do miss our old life at times; a life of knowing what to expect, but I can't go back. There was so much I was oblivious to, like how God will humble the proud. I don't look back in despair, when I look back at my life before the trials and tribulations I realize that was then, and I am living a better life now. 

God cares more about our character than how comfortably we're living. He wants to get close to us and if He feels something is getting in the way of that -- a distraction that can take many forms -- He will remove it. My God, did He shake my world! But I am in awe of it all, and we're still alive, we are still living and breathing and trusting Him. He has never left our side.

Reflect in how you've grown this past year, what are some ways you have changed for the better? How about if nothing has changed? If you feel stuck, that can change. Don't fight Him, don't fight the process. There is more inside of you left to be discovered, if you are still in the same habits and patterns you are not growing, and what doesn't grow perishes. Growth is good -- it's painful -- but it's good.

I pray that in this new year you will begin to see the potential that is inside of you, the potential of the great person you can be. I also pray that you will meet God face-to-face, in a way that you can feel His love for you, and that you will know that you can trust Him.

Happy New Year, friend!

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, 3for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. 4And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
— James 1:1-4

In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can man do to me?
— Psalm 56: 10-11

Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?
— Isaiah 43:19

One's pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.
— Proverbs 29:23

Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.
— Matthew 23:12


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