06 May 2012

{faith} things I've learned this year

Birthdays.
They always make me introspective. They make me think about what I've learned, what choices I've made, what's working and what's not, what I want for my future. This year I've had less time to think about all that. As much as I want to, as much as I love being inside my head -- my family is definitely keeping me in the present, keeping me from being too self-absorbed. Nevertheless, I've learned some important things this year.

My husband and I took a walk last night and talked a bit about things I've learned. I managed to jot down a few ideas while we brainstormed. Yes, I walk with a pen and spiral notebook.

1) Embracing the seasons -- not always wishing for tomorrow.
I'm enjoying spring while it's here. I'm enjoying my two year old before he's three. I'm not anxious for the future to hurry up and come like I used to be.
"You direct me on the path that leads to a beautiful life.
As I walk with You, the pleasures are never-ending,
and I know true joy and contentment." Psalm 16:11 The Voice
2) Being grateful for each blessing -- living in the present.
After reading Ann Voskamp's book, One Thousand Gifts, I'm a changed person. I can always think of something to be thankful for. I'm much much more grateful for things, just the way they are.
"Now that you have welcomed the Anointed One, Jesus the Lord, into your lives, continue to journey with Him and allow Him to shape your lives. Let your roots grow down deeply in Him, and let Him build you up on a firm foundation. Be strong in the faith, just as you were taught, and always spill over with thankfulness." Colossians 2:6,7 The Voice
3) Becoming more aware of things that drain or replenish my mental energy and refueling more efficiently.
I'm saying no to things that drain my energy. I'm learning to avoid distractions and focus in on the things that refuel me quickly. I still have much to learn here.

4) Enjoying time with my husband.
We've learned that we talk better while we walk. I've learned that initiating physical touch is worth it, even if it doesn't come naturally to me. I'm learning to accept his flaws and focus on the things I love about him.

5) Letting go of an idealistic, perfect life and the guilt that comes with it.
Totally. Letting go of guilt has been big this year. I'm learning to have grace for myself. And grace for others.

6) Being myself and being OK with who I am.
Being comfortable in my own skin. Being aware of my unique personality and unique gifts. Giving myself space to be the best me, not trying to be like someone else.
"Love others well, and don’t hide behind a mask; love authentically." Romans 12:9 The Voice
7) Learning how to ask my husband for help -- one thing at a time.
I had to include this. *grin* Boy, am I glad I figured this one out. It's not that he doesn't want to help...he just likes to be given one task at a time. Or was that one task per day?? ;D Love ya honey.

8) Loving the simple life.
Spending less. Accumulating less. Giving more. Serving more. Focusing on the smallest, yet sometimes the most important things. Realizing that less is really more. Being aware of how little we need to live happily together.
"This is ironic because godliness, along with contentment, does put us ahead but not in the ways some imagine. You see we came into this world with nothing, and nothing is going with us on the way out! So as long as we are clothed and fed, we should be happy." 1 Timothy 6:6-8 The Voice
Yep. I've learned a lot and have much more to learn. I'm excited to see what this next year brings! 
Stay tuned for my list of 30 things to do before I'm 30. T minus 365 days and counting!