2015 was a hard year.
Overall, it was exhausting.
Early in 2015 we purchased a 1928 Dutch Colonial fixer-upper in Eastern Ohio. The negotiating process leading up to that purchase was several weeks of an emotional roller coaster, but in the end it was worth it because we own a home we love dearly.
As with any fixer-upper there are surprises, and we encountered plenty over the summer. The most overwhelming was late June when a flash flood caused our basement to fill wall-to-wall with 6-inches of sewage. This uncovered even more surprises. We dealt with this while parenting our 3 children (ages 5, 7 and 9 at the time). I’ll just leave that right there for your imagination to take hold of.
September 2015, after years of finding no answers, one of our daughters was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder. While the diagnosis gave us peace of mind that we weren’t crazy, we began the journey of learning who to parent our differently-abled child differently than her siblings.
Through it all God opened our eyes to see Him caring for us in the midsts of such an awful set of circumstances. But this didn’t change the fact that nearly all of 2015 was incredibly trying, stressful and intense for our whole family.
In looking ahead to 2016 I have hopes that it will be a “less heavy” kind of year. Operating under such financial, physical and emotional/ mental stress for an extended period of time gets to you, at least it did to me. I was a mess for nearly the entire month of October and most of November.
The intensity of life made it easy for my mind to fixate on my little world: my drama, my problems, me me me. It couldn’t be helped to some degree (and I needed to turn inward to survive at times), but after a while I got tired of thinking of myself so much.
Which leads me to 2016.
And my word for the year.
My hope is that I can turn my eyes outward a little more and learn to be hospital, generous and a better friend.
That I will grasp and understand God’s Grace over, in, and through my life just a little bit more.
That my life will flower to a more fruitful and abundant life as described in Galatians 5.
Will the days of 2016 be like the joyous days of Spring after a long, harsh winter? I can only hope.
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