Thursday, January 7, 2016

December was December

We celebrated our 43rd at a B&B. The see-through fireplace connecting the bedroom with a wonderful sofa and the bathroom complete with a soaking tub and a comfy overstuffed chair next to the tall, well-stocked bookcase created the perfect space to sit, to ponder the Christmas story, to be.
 The cake was a hit!
Family - those precious gifts God has graced us with book-ended the month. I flew to California the first week of December to join in the fun of Ezra's first birthday and our first gift-exchange of the season. Ezra is doing well. He accepts his pokes, injections, and g-tube without complaint. Even 5 1/2 year old Judah was able to help me with a g-tube issue one morning. It's normal life for this branch of our family tree.

Jack, the Blokus champ

The last week of the month, the Kansas Tell's drove out for a few days. Besides our third Christmas gift-exchange, the snow, baking cookies together, and game after game of Blokus were highlights.

Ashlyn and her Mom

In-between Bill and I celebrated our Christmas. Church, our traditional Christmas brunch followed by our gift exchange, and later a special dinner, all capped off by enjoying our neighbors Christmas dessert pot-luck.

And a December cold took up residence in my body, the Y temporarily history.

Yes, I loved it all (except the cold).

Happy, thankful, content, full, expectant, weary - all good descriptors as 2015 faded. But the thought of a New Year's Resolution and more to do was overwhelming. Do you identify?

And then I read the words of my friend Blythe Hunt. Oh how they resonated.

Blythe is a mother of two littles. Her life circumstances are very different from mine, but we share a similiar heart; we have similiar needs. As I read her words, I breathed deeply; I relaxed; a smile crept across by weary face.

She didn't suggest a new exercise program, or the latest, greatest diet, or even a new way to read through the Bible in 2016. She offered four "be's". Be's that were not new, but be's that needed to be highlighted once again. Thank you, Blythe.

Be Loved - Reviewing God's love as part of my daily quiet time is a life-line for me. Grabbing that life-line and hanging on - trusting it - is transforming me. I smile as I pen these words. For sure, I will continue this discipline; it is truly a favorite. I John 3:1.

Be Still - and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10. I'm learning that building a friendship requires
stillness, quietness. Only then am I ready to listen for His voice. I will continue this practice as well, starting my devotional times with minutes of stillness.

Be Kind - I Corinthians 13, the well-known, oft quoted chapter speaks a lot (8 different times) about what love is not. But it only mentions 2 qualities of what love is, patient and kind, verse 4. I'm learning that when I practice the 2, the 8 automatically happen.

One area that I'm practicing kindness in lately is with my words. Psalm 19:14 is another regular prayer verse for me.

Perhaps I'll keep this up.
Be Joyful - I love this mug (below) my friend Connie gave me for my birthday. Not only because I'm a coffee-aholic, but because of the message it speaks as I sip my morning joe. I'm thinking that as I live being loved, being still, and being kind, being joyful will be a natural by-product.

So for me, January is not about a new list of do's; it is about continuing the be's that I've been learning to enjoy in my friendship with God. Thank you, Blythe; your words greatly encourage.

What are your thoughts and plans concerning New Year's Resolutions? I'd be honored to pray for you.

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is now law."
Galatians 5:22, 23

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