Current trends suggest that every year is both harder and more amazingly wonderful than the last. Such was true of dear 2012.
For time and sanity I'm going to be brief. Also, I'm going to try not to be sentimental, because this year was so packed and wonderful I could easily torment you with my feelings. ;-) And I feel like I already did that raving about various New York adventures. Then there was Aisha's wedding and Family Camp and Rachel's visit and a thousand other things that were so very close to perfect, they may be dangerous to talk about.
Here are twelve brief thoughts from last year in no order of importance. They are also thoughts I want to remember and remind myself of for shiny, new 2013.
1. Feed your brain always. When I feel dead, beat down, foggy-headed, what I probably need is a good dose of something thick and chewy like Ecclesiastes or John Donne.
2. History is one of the most exciting things in the world. The end.
Postscript- In history we see don't just what people believed but how they believed it, not just with their heads but with their hands, their feet, their blood, their souls.
3. I used to think that things needed to be saved, especially creativity or special moments, but now I know God is enough and way bigger than any plans or ideas I can possibly have in mind. God lavishes ridiculously and does not let us get over thrills, but only gives us deeper, crazier ones.
4. God cares about the fatherless, the widow, the orphan...the lonely, the hungry, the hurting. I know this because I have felt it, and I must be reminded because I need to care about these people too. Sometimes they are not who I thought.
5. God is about filling up. We should be about pouring out.
6. People are not trustworthy, but the Holy Spirit working in them is. The only important thing is the work of Jesus in someone. Not where they have been or what they have done. This is the only way to have a relationship of trust.
This was head knowledge for me. I say, in God we trust...but now I'm trying to live like it is true.
7. Don't tear it down. I need to care enough about it to build it up if I think something is wrong. Don't run over the people who are trying, instead dig in with them and get my hands dirty.
8. Jesus is the Mediator...of everything. He is the quickest way, and often the only way, between two people.
9. Our hearts should become bigger and more squishy with each sorrow and joy, not harder. Jesus has given us the answer to suffering and shown us the wildness of joy.
10. We're supposed to love in a way that means getting hurt. And we can afford it because we have all we need. Love like Jesus. Bleed.
11. The Church, the Body of Christ, my dear brothers and sisters, is a more massive blessing than I can ever fathom. God has taught me so much through you all, particularly you in my own physical church. Your impact on my life and the love you lavish on my often thick and ungrateful skull is quite beyond my comprehension. The conversations, encouragement, and exhortation I have been given this year has been a huge part of the complete, devastating blessing of 2012. God is so good. And He so often works through imperfect but loving, gracious hands.
12. The Gospel is freedom. Live and fight and dance in that.