Good Afternoon and Happy Monday!
At the start of 2014, I was ready and eager to learn from my past and press forward to growth and maturity. It took time and patience to dig through the mistakes of my past and address them in order to make a way for positive change. It was a learning process and I am really thankful for the ways that I was challenged to rise above my old way of living and find my footing in this season. January was a month of consistent growth. I searched my heart for its desires and named my fears. It was a powerful time in my life, but the flame of motivation slowly began to get a bit smaller because I stopped feeding it.
After conquering my biggest fear by having surgery last month, I found myself in an unexpected state of complacency. Initially, I couldn’t figure out what was wrong. After all, I felt like my recovery should have been one of the happiest times in my young life, but instead I wasn’t feeling like myself. There were really specific prayers of mine that had been answered, and yet I wasn’t content. It was as though I thought I had already done enough and that I could sit in one place for a while and rest there instead of continuing in my growth. Then on Friday I sat down for a quiet afternoon of writing and prayer. It was then that I realized the problem was within my heart. I had a lot of areas in my character that I wanted to address and speak life into. I have been told that I can be quite self-critical and I am finally starting to see that. Instead of listing my shortcomings, which I think would be oppressive, I have listed ten things that I want to say yes to and be mindful of in this season:
- Be slow to anger, stand firm and remain calm in moments that test my character.
- Be confident and extend grace to myself as I grow as a designer, writer, leader, daughter, and friend.
- Walk humbly through life and do not shine a light on myself but instead direct others to Him.
- Talk less, choose my words carefully, speaking life and truth into those around me.
- Pray through decisions and seek the first step towards them with discernment and wisdom.
- Live intentionally, being focused and present.
- Trust that God has great things planned ahead, I need only seek His will and walk with Him.
- Be patient and do not grab the pen from God as He writes out my life.
- Appreciate who I am and the unique gifts that I have been given.
- Bear good fruit and pour goodness into the lives of others.
As we approach spring later this week, I am excited to take hold of this shift in my perspective. In order for this goodness to take root in my life, I thought it would be wise to cultivate it with a big helping of truth, too:
My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. Do everything in love.
But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.
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.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.
Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
I’m excited to see life through fresh eyes and to speak this truth into my life until it has taken root within my heart, and then I can speak it into the lives of others too. I hope you are enjoying your Monday and that you can cling to some of these pieces of scripture as well.