Friday, December 31, 2010

Adios 2010

This week has filled my mind with reflections. .both of the past year and of the year to come.  The year has been mild. .no major milestones. . but no major trauma either! 
My heart has been heavy though with my ponderings. My good friend called on Christmas morning to tell me that his sister in law had been killed in a tragic, one vehicle crash earlier that morning. .and that has provoked a very profound appreciation for the gift of life.  On January 1, 2010. .if you would have told that family. .and countless others. .the events that they would encounter in the next one year. .they would have never been able to imagine! I think also for the people that I have interacted with over the last one year that have suffered devastating loss of spouses, siblings, parents, and even losses of their own good health.  Some of those losses couldn't even have been fathomed on January 1, 2010.  Some days I am just frightened about HOW quickly and profoundly our lives can change.  BUT. .I am quickly reminded of scripture offered to us to calm the soul. . Such as. .
Phillipeans 4:6-7
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.

Matthew 6:27
 Can any one of you, by worrying add a single hour to your life?

Matthew 6:34
 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.
Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Psalm 31:23-24
 Love the Lord, all his faithful people! The Lord preserves
those who are true to him, but the proud he pays back in full.
 Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord.

Now, I am not a worry-er by nature, but when I get un-nerved about something. .look out! So this particular passage is very comforting!
Isaiah 41:10
 fear not, for I am with you;
be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Although I don't know what tomorrow holds. .I DO know who holds tomorrow. . and I know that whatever happens in 2011; God will have my back. .which in turns strengthens me enough to help others in the capacity that he has called me to. . .which leads me to some of my New Year's Resolutions!!
Has anyone ever heard the song What Love Really Means. .sung by J.J. Heller?
I LOVE that song!! If you haven't heard it and you have time. .it would be REALLY worth your while to  check it out here
It talks about people dying for someone to love them for who they are. .and not what they are. .or even what they will be!  One of the things that I want to do better in 2011 is to be an unconditional "lover." I often find it hard to love people where they are at. .especially if I don't LIKE where they are at.  Some people (including my kids. .my husband. .my friends. .my patients. .MEEEE) don't always make good decisions. It puts them in bad positions and rough spots in life. I want to practiceTRULY loving these people ALWAYS. .despite the stupid things they do and say. .and wish for the same mercy for myself from others.

A second goal for 2011 is to increase my reading.  I used to LOVE to read. .but as life happened. .it was a luxury that fell away.  Last summer I tried to start reading the bible on a more regular basis.  I'm not doing too badly. .but can certainly improve on it!  I also have several books that are on my list. I really believe that knowledge is power. .and that we can always find room for improvement in EVERY aspect of our lives. I am just finishing up "the Love Dare," based from the movie Fireproof (which, by the way. .I have never even seen! I hear it is great!!). Also on my list are "the Power of a Positive Mom" by Carol Ladd, "For Women Only" by  Shaunti and Jeff Feldhahn and a book on Esther called "Hadassah" by Tommy Tenney.  I bought "For men only" for Jeremy to read too.  I read that book last week and highlighted the things about women (me in particular) that I thought he should read twice. I was pretty impressed with the way that they capture how women really operate. .and the research that went into writing the book. I am excited to read about how men think and operate. .and see if I can figure out that gender difference going on!! I hear stories A LOT in my job from both women and men related to the profound differences in our make-ups. .and hope that I can also share some tidbits and advice for them to use as well!! The books you read play a huge part in shaping the person you become!! I can't WAIT to see who I will be when I finally get grown up ;-)

My perpetual goal of the last 7-8 years has been to stop SWEARING!! I gain. .but I never totally succeed. This is the year. .It WILL happen! I blame my husbands mouth and my children's naughtiness. .but really. . it just boils down to one VERY bad habit. .and poor choices!

We have a few house projects on the list for the new year. .a front sidewalk to adjoin the pond where we ripped out the old rock one. .and a bathroom remodel.
We are also hoping for a few trips this year. We are hoping to spend some of spring break in Houston visiting my in-laws before they move back to Kansas. .I also found a great conference on contraceptive technology (I know. .something only exciting to ME!!) held in Boston. And. .my friend Cindy and I are hoping to surprise our men with a fun little trip next fall. . .shhh. .it's a secret!!

Our lives will be what our lives will be. .and what God intends them to be.  God willing. .I will be able to stick to my resolutions and become a better person because of them. .God willing. .my family and friends will remain healthy and happy. .God willing I will be able to make a difference in someone's life weekly. .if not DAILY!  God willing. .YOU all will be equally blessed throughout the next year.
Wishing everyone an abundantly BLESSED New Year!!
Adios 2010. .Welcome 2011!


  1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and the verses, Melanie. Lots to think about in life, isn't there? I like your reminder to just love people where they're at. That's what I want to do, just love people where they're at, and for who they are, not "because" of anything. JUST LOVE. I enjoyed reading your ideas for the year ahead - um... yeah .... I have a word or two that slip out when I'm frustrated. We can do this! :) Y'all have a blessed year ahead! Thanks so much for sharing on your blog - I love to read it and I really enjoy your photos. :)

  2. What a great post. I used to have a lot of anxiety about what if something bad happens. Fortunately, I am free of that bondage now and pretty much take it one day at a time and let the Lord handle what's ahead. It's very freeing. Today I have been doing a little thinking about resolutions. One thing I want to do is take more time to take care of myself. I think I used to take better care of myself in the past, but now I think I put myself on the back burner...the house and kids and husband come first and I have to stop doing that. I'm talking about everything from doctor appts., new glasses, taking care of my skin, my finger nails, don't let my hands get so dry and cracked in the winter...just all kinds of stuff...from big stuff to little stuff.
    Happy New Years to you!

  3. I REALLY needed those verses today! 2010 was really a great year for us, so I hope 2011 is just as wonderful!

  4. Wow, that was great. You inspire and up lift me so often. I would love to hear the results of your "love dare". I will pray for your success in your new resolution, I know how tough that is! DJ

  5. Oh, gosh. Love that song. I was recently blessed with her cd.
    What you said about loving others reminded me of something I just wrote in my journal as I'm reading through "Celebration of Discipline." The author is talking about how abiding in Christ and spending time with him in prayer, the word, fasting, etc, (referred to as disciplines) lets his love slip into our spirits and transform us and take over our habit patterns. He says, "There is no longer the tiring need to hide our inner selves from others. We do not have to work hard at being good and kind; we ARE good and kind." I just loved how he put that! I think it means that instead of disciplining them nicely in the grocery store and then growing horns when we're finally in the van, I could actually be one, sane, consistent human being! LOL!!!! Happy New Year!