It’s a Wrap

As I sit here on Christmas Eve night and think about 2014 it makes me tired. Or maybe I’m tired because I have spent the last 6 days taking care of sick people/children, cleaning up after sick people, and trying to pull Christmas together. We have lived in our new home for a total of four weeks on Christmas Day and have been sick for most of that time. The way this year ended sums up much of my year. Sometimes we have to go through a lot of crap because that is the path we are on. That is where we are. That is what we signed up for. We don’t always see the silver lining at the beginning, but even if we do, we lose sight of it along the way.

At the end of last year I wrote a piece as if I was writing it at the end of this year. It talked about everything I did/accomplished in 2014, etc. as if I was looking through a crystal ball. It was fun to read it to see how closely my life followed that path. To some degree it did. Some of the items in the document took me down a very different path than I imagined and what I thought was going to be big in 2014 turned out to be small. Whereas what I thought were smaller goals lead us down very big endeavors.

What do I want my next year to look like? Is my perspective on life different now than it was one year ago? I think so. Life is ever-changing. And we, as humans, are ever-changing also. The difference in people in this area is that some people steer their changes and others drift with the external change. If I have learned anything this year it is that we can’t control our lives. Homeschooling and other decisions have been a big teacher of that for me. What we can control is this – our response to how reality actually plays out. I like to have a plan, and I think it is good to have one, but it rarely (if ever) goes exactly according to that plan. My response to those things is what builds or tears apart my character.

My attitude of response is much more humbling and grateful when I keep my eyes focused on Christ and not my circumstances. When I take my eyes off of Christ and focus on me, thinking  external circumstances are a result of me, things crumble. Relationships, roles, influences – they crumble.  What I am constantly thankful for is that God’s mercies are new every morning. Because as much as I work to keep my eyes on Christ, they do fall. And when they do…his mercies are NEW!

I am going to make tangible goals for 2015 along with some deeper, more spiritual and emotional goals. This will be a first for me – but one that I need to explore. Not necessarily one that I am anxious to explore, but one that is needed for going deeper in life with people and God.

So now, my “WORD OF THE YEAR” for 2015.This is always a process. All that is in this year will shape the next so I want to make it count. This one word will be my focus for the entire year. As with most people, there are areas in my life that I have worked on over and over but…well…they just keep coming back. I master it for a short time and then fall back into old habit. My word – DISCIPLINE. Discipline for me will look like this in 2015 – getting up consistently at 5:30 to focus on my relationship with Christ; consistently monthly budgeting with my husband; consistently managing our finances; consistently budgeting my time and following through; consistently plan meals on a monthly basis. The theme in all of these – is I need self discipline in all of them in order to make them impact my life.

Why am I sharing all of this with you? Because it makes it real for me. It keeps me accountable. And, it may be an encouragement to someone else. If you are looking for some motivation and encouragement for the new year, here are a few great articles to get you started.

I’m Tired of Losing 30 Pounds

Want a New Start in 2015

2015 Dream Guide


Happy 2015 to you all!


6 Responses to It’s a Wrap

  1. Jan McCroskey says:

    Susan, I am really impressed. You have such a great outlook on life. I have always admired you! I am in full agreement that we have to put God first and then everything else will work out. Sounds like you have a plan for 2015. Happy New Year to you and the family. Love you all!

    • susan says:

      Jan, thank you so much. I admire you too in many ways. You are a strong woman of faith who has incredible persistence and endurance. We love you!

  2. Mary Barnett says:

    Thanks so much Susan for the beautiful thoughts in this letter. I am so very touched by them. God sends us what we need when we least expect it. My love to you Josh and the children.

    • susan says:

      Mary, thanks so much for taking the time to read this. And I’m so glad you were touched by it. God has been really nudging me to keep writing regularly, but I keep putting it off because I keep thinking that no one wants to hear my thoughts. But then I remember that He has His plans that I do not know and so I push forward.

  3. GB says:

    Well done. Keep it up.

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