This week for Monday Lovin’ I am recapping five of my favorite things of 2014. I learned to walk again in 2014, and then once I found my footing, my stroll increased to a speed walk. I started to dream in 2014, with a new confidence, one that I don’t know if I’ve ever had. Confidence in God and confidence in myself. It feels good to be confident in my own skin. And so in no particular order, five of my favorite things from this past year.
- It was a busy, busy summer. I was in one wedding, went to two more, went on several vacations (Bethany Beach, Cleveland, Las Vegas) and had a lot of fun. But in the midst of all the fun, there was some deep-seated discontentment and uncertainty about my job, my worth and my future. I helped one of my best friends organize Lake Weekend 2014, a retreat for some of our closest friends. The weekend was a turning point for me in beginning to wrestle through the discontentment, uncertainty and fear that had been crippling me, and sitting right beneath the surface all summer. I am so thankful for the questions that were asked and the truth that was spoken that weekend.
- I don’t know if I’ll ever have just one full-time job. I like the challenge of balancing multiple jobs, sorting through my priorities and being given different avenues for growth and creativity. The second half of this year, the increased opportunity for came in the form of merchandising the kids section of our store. I look forward to sitting down with the concept book, organizing my information, creating a plan and then executing it. This element of working in retail gives me structure and freedom.
- Making the decision to move to Indianapolis has been the gift that keeps on giving. The best part of the move has been the friendships I’ve been able to build, both from the beginning, and also upon a foundation from college. I’ve found a common theme in these relationships – a depth that comes from admitting that life isn’t quite what you thought it would be. Because it’s not, but friends to live life alongside, wrestling with the “not quites” and the “maybe nevers”, can be the biggest blessing.
- I made a list in August. It was a list of all the things that are life-giving to me. I went on to make a commitment to these things. Weeks turn into months really quickly when I’m not careful, and without being intentional about how to spend time, I can start feeling empty. Writing was one of the things I put on the list, and something that has really shaped my fall. In October, I wrote 29/31 days on the topic of grace. In December, a blog I wrote was published on a women’s online community. I like the way that writing helps me process, and gives me an outlet; words bring life into the monotony.
- Even though each adoptive family I talk to tells me that there’s nothing special about them, I beg to differ. Working with families on their adoption journeys is a privilege for me, and a highlight of my year. I have had such encouraging conversations with families who are beginning the adoption process, or finally bringing their children home. The sacrifice they demonstrate on behalf of the child who they are committed to parenting to truly moving.
Oh, 2014, you’ve been a great year. Thanks for the countless memories. I’m thankful to serve a faithful God who has orchestrated such special moments.