A month ago, I was cutting out pictures and words for my 2015 goals collage to paste onto my poster board. I swear it was a month ago.
My, the speed of which this year has flown!
This time, last year the Lord spoke to me about 2015 being the year of new beginnings. It has definitely been that, but not in a way I thought it would.
We all dream of accomplishing big goals before the New Year. We envision glorious victories in the New Year that somehow will make an impact in our world. Little do we think of the battles we must fight first to get to the victory. As if the victory comes with no battle. Or we think the battle will be a piece of cake. Never do we envision the struggle that causes us to stumble or fall to our knees, weary from the fight.
Milestones reached. Victories won.
All without the battle.
That was my vision.
My goal that I cut out and glued onto a poster board for a reminder was to be a writer and a life coach. I glued a bunch of other goals too. I glued images of a house, a laptop, and a filing cabinet. There’s a lady running on pavement to symbolize my goal to exercise. Words such as “Organized”, “Board of Christian Life Coaching” are also glued randomly in position across the board.
I entered 2015 with high hopes. I reached my first goal in February by joining a gym and went rather faithfully every week until summertime when I spent more time outside taking walks at the lake. Good start to the New Year, eh? Only nine more goals to check off my list!
I don’t know what happened. Somewhere along the way the battles emerged. Sleep problems increased because colon problems increased. Self-doubt crept into my mind. I kept moving forward. I kept placing one foot in front of the other, but then my forehead found a wall. I kept trying to push through the wall, but the wall didn’t budge. Not even a tiny bit! So I stood and stared at the wall.
I prayed and cried out to God for help. For wisdom. For anything!
Soldiers learn to scale walls. Why can’t I scale this one?
I heard this whisper in my ear, “Not through my effort, but by God’s grace.”
I felt like I’m being sung to sleep. Lulled to rest from my tireless, fruitless efforts and allow God to do His work. To surprise me with His grace that is for those who can’t help themselves. A gift I can’t receive by effort but only by faith.
Didn’t God do His best work when Adam was asleep? Just sayin’. 🙂
“Not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of hosts.” Zec. 4:6
So I give into sleep. I give into rest.
As I look back on this year through my rearview mirror, I see it has indeed been a year of new beginnings. Not only new beginnings but small beginnings. Small efforts that seem insignificant. You can’t get any smaller than sleeping. I’ve felt like a sleepwalker this year. I did what only I could do as I slept and walked. And then I lay myself down. I took naps, as many as possible, even though I wanted to do so much more.
The wall is breaking apart now. I see it.
I launched a craft business last month. No sale yet to speak of, but it’s launched.
After months of trying to come up with a name for my life coaching practice, a name came to me just last week.
For a couple of years, I’ve had a new filing cabinet on my list of things to get for my home office but never found one at the right time to meet my pocketbook. Now, through no effort of mine, I have two filing cabinets coming my way free of charge.
New beginnings. Small beginnings.
Now, I lay me down to sleep. I rest from my work; the Lord will keep all things that concern me. I leave the outcome in His capable hands. (Bet you thought I was trying to rhyme, didn’t ya?)
He is faithful. I know this and I keep reminding my anxious heart.
I will rest and one day I will wake to see the glory of God and marvel at His wondrous work.
Do you need to rest? Jesus asks,
“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythm of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitted on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” Matthew 11:28-30 The Message