For me, this year has been a ‘soldiering on’ year, many people might read that and think “hmm, isn’t that every year?”, but Nahh, for me, this year was that year that amidst all obstacles I just woke up every morning and I said “oh well, we have to keep moving”. So amidst the waiting, amidst the answers that came and the ones that didn’t come, I resolved to keep running with my convictions which were “God is good” and “I am a child of a Good God”. They are two different convictions that I think are important in the life of every believer.
It didn’t make it hurt any less when faced with seeming crazy situations, even with those convictions, what it did though is that it kept me from feeling or thinking hopeless or neglected because Jesus felt all that so I didn’t have to.
Soldiering on this year taught me a few things which I’d love to share with you in this post.
1. It taught me to cry. I could be such a brave person and hold it all in till it disappears inside me somehow, but this year, when I felt water gather in my eyes, I found a place I could cry without hindrance and I cried and let it all out. I prayed while at it and after every cry, I felt better. I think God made us with tear ducts and emotions that could lead to tears because He knows how much of an outlet that it is. So I hope in 2022 you allow your hard self cry when it needs an outlet. I hope you don’t make tears an enemy or a sign of weakness but instead, embrace it as a healthy part of you. A good servant but not a good master.
2. It taught me to stay. This year I trusted God for so many things, some are still even yet to come but I stayed and I know in my spirit that, that alone made God happy. Whether the answers came of not, I stayed with Him and in His presence, not because there weren’t days where I felt unheard or ignored but because I knew that I wasn’t staying in exchange for an answer, I was staying because this is what I really wanted to do, whether an answer came or not.
3. It taught me faith and courage. Because of the identity I’ve grown to own from studying Gods word, a boldness came with it and that meant that I couldn’t be tossed here and there by every wind, whether of doctrine or of circumstance. Like Abraham, I believed that “God is able to do what He has promised”. So even days where it seemed the end of the rope was near, I woke up and I believed something would happen before the rope finished, all I had to do was stay holding on to that rope.
4. It taught me more the power of reflection and meditation. I had a lot of alone time this year. Those alone times were filled more with reflections and meditations than anything else. The Holy Spirit uses our memory to remind us of Gods faithfulness in the past and then He uses our pondering to align our thoughts and ways to Gods own. This happened so many times I lost count and so in 2022, I’m giving myself more time for reflections and meditations.
5. Finally, it taught me the ease of our God. God isn’t hard or complicated. He actually is best reflected in the simple and so His operation is just as easy. The renewal of mind Romans 12:2 speaks about comes with moving the human being from hard to simple. God taught me not to interpret hard situations of life as His simple operations. The moment I started to get overwhelmed from thinking through hard situations, God showed me the easy ways out which always yielded fruit. So This year, I’m committing to walk more in the simple way of God and not try to complicate His operation in my life and in that of those around me.
Through my retreat reflections, I’ve struggled to decide what I want 2022 to look like which is unlike me, so I’ve resolved to taking all these lessons from this year and moving one day at a time in 2022 because I want every line and precept in all God wants to teach me next year.
“He tells us everything over and over, one line at a time, one line at a time, a little here, and a little there!” – Isaiah 28:10