Hello again, my lovely readers! I decided to take a week off, because everything seems to be happening all at once. The end of my first half of my masters and moving into a new apartment, dear Danielle and my life has been surrounded by boxes and planning. Luckily, I am now writing from our office space here, and though surrounded by boxes of our lives, I am grateful for this continued journey. Whenever I move I tend to get introspective, and I was thinking about the road of life. New places and faces, and the unknown ahead of you, all while never turning out the way we might think. If I’m honest, these are hard moments for me; I would love my life to play out exactly the way I want, to have a house with space to host people and to write all day with dear Danielle, but life doesn’t move like that. It moves on how God chooses to direct us.
That’s what I have to remind myself and it’s what gives me hope in all that I don’t know yet, that everything begins on a foundational relationship.
It’s now almost been two full months into this new year, how are your goals doing? It’s easy to be excited about growing and changing at the start of the year, but typically this is right about the time that those goals and pursuits begin to slow. So, how are you doing? Checking in on yourself is important because growth is important. I’ve found for me, I want to do all kinds of things and push myself into this person I think I should be, but often those standards are unattainable, so when I fail to hit that mark, I choose to stay complacent. There is a myriad of reasons why goals fail and a myriad of books to help with that, but I think the important part is understanding the “why” behind the goals.
We want to grow into better people, but we need to make sure we are growing in a healthy way.
The mini-series that began in 2017, written by Tom King and drawn by Mitch Gerads, was one of the most powerful comics I have read in a long time.
I read this book from day one. I had heard that Tom King and Mitch Gerads were collaborating on a new story, I got really excited to see what it was going to be about. Then it was announced that they would be coming out with a Mister Miracle storyline. Mister Miracle is one of the many creations Jack Kirby brought to DC Comics, and has had a few highlights over the years, but has never really had a devoted series like this was sounding to be. A character whose power is that they can escape anything and a past being a soldier on a hellscape world, I was interested in this series and what direction it would go.
Then, I picked up my copy.
Motivation can be incredibly hard some days. What helps you get through the day and wake up excited? Sometimes that motivation seems to leave us and cause us to hit our snooze button more than we’d like. Maybe you’re in a season like me where you have passion, but just aren’t sure where to go next. Without solid motivation, we find distractions way more appetizing. Getting up for school is way harder to be motivated for, but when it comes to the last day of school and summer vacation in our grasp, we practically leap out of bed. So, how can we get that summer vacation motivation in all areas of our lives? What is your motivator that drives you forward?
The simple answer to attaining this excitement that drives you: Love.
Some days are harder than others. For each of us, we go through seasons that often bring change, and the change doesn’t always feel great. There are times when we have been pushed into a new unknown, but all we want to do is head back to what is comfortable. The hard part is, without moving forward, there is no growth. I know for me, I get so caught up in the future and wanting to be in the place where I feel like I’ll have “made it,” that I forget the immediate and the opportunities to love other where I am. Last week I talked about having the reaction of love with others, but today I want to talk about loving yourself.
February is always a fun season. You get to see all sorts of pink Valentines stuff that no one really needs, unless it’s the heart shaped Reese’s candy. It’s a season of love, the end of the winter season is around the corner and we remember being in class and getting those great little paper notes. Love is so much more than this, it can often just be seen as the romantic, but the reality is that love is so much more than feelings toward another person, it is an action and one that should be our first choice.
I’m struck by how little love there is around us.
Hello again there! How has your year been so far? Keeping up with the goals and words to focus on? I know for me; the year has already begun to throw challenges our way. From the job searching that feels like I’m hitting walls, to our apartment complex that won’t contact us about our deposit (Yikes!), and my second semester of my Master’s Degree kicked off. There is a lot going on, it feels like my head is constantly spinning and thinking. In these moments, I find it difficult to focus on what I can control when so much of what I can’t control is all around me.
The thing is, I know God has me, I just have to trust him.
“I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God did not give you a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, love, and self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:6-7
I’ve recently started enjoying making fires. Let me explain that when I say this, I’m meaning fires in fireplaces, I have always respected Mr. Smokey Bear. Being able to create a fire in a fireplace, starting small and then building up into a fire that can warm a space is calming for me. What I’ve been able to see is that there is a key element in burning, you can’t suffocate the fire and you need to fan the flames. Fanning the flames allows for oxygen to enter into the mix, and fire can only burn if oxygen is present. I have been reading through Paul’s letters and I have begun to love the way Paul encourages Timothy. Timothy is a part of the next generation of leaders and Paul is pouring into his life, encouraging him to remain faithful even when life seems tough.
Another year has passed, and it may just have been one of the most eventful years. For me, heading into this new year, much like my previous new year reflections, was how I can use what I learned to create strong goals for this year. Last year I wanted to be more creative and do more, but what I learned is that in order for me to be the best I can be, I need to know who I am. I found that when the world shut down, I was given time to process my past in order to grow into where I feel called. It was a year to grow and a year with set aside time for that growth.
With this new year, I have more goals, and I want to make sure they are the right goals for the new year.
At the start of this year, dear Danielle and I chose a word that we would focus on. Similar to many ideas that come with the new year, we chose a word that we wanted to add to who we were, a character trait that would be pressed into in order to grow closer to who God is calling us to be. That word was “lover.” We wanted to move into this current year with forgiveness and make sure we showed love through every part of us. We wanted to be active in our love for people, because people matter.
Little did we know that a global pandemic would happen.