That’s my word for 2018. I feel like so much in me has been asleep for so long. Some of it for the past year, some for a few years, some for my whole life. Potential for greatness in so many areas, lying dormant, or lulled to sleep by fear and the lies that causes it. This year, I hope to see the sun rise and a new day dawn.

It will be God who does this work in me, He will be the one who, in his loving, gentle, patient way, awakens me. He will order my steps, inspire me, encourage me, embolden me. He will awaken courage, open my eyes to His goodness and my worth. He will equip me to take each step and give me purpose. I realized this morning that Advent doesn’t end with Christmas Day, but can be a way of life, of living with a sense of hope and expectation of God working in, through, and around me. That is how I am looking at the year ahead.

Awakening won’t come all at once, but I will savor every tiny splinter of light that creeps over me along this journey, and hopefully share as much of it with you as I can.

Here’s something I’ve been able to see more and more clearly lately, and particularly this morning: diversion from “the plan” isn’t a failure or a call to throw my hands up, but instead an opportunity to look for what else God might have in store.

Example: my alarm went off at six this morning, and I checked the temperature outside immediately, to see if my early morning walk was even feasible-nope. It was five degrees out there! I’m not going out in less than high twenties. Just not. I got up, though, because I need to retrain my body clock after a couple weeks off. When I came downstairs, I puzzled a bit as I put the water on to boil for tea, and decided that if a walk wasn’t happening I was just going to do what comes next in my routine, and go forward from there. So, there was meditation practice, then devotional time while I had breakfast, and since I finished all that before my family came downstairs, I checked off another item on my agenda planned for later today, and took that time to read something encouraging. Then I had a few moments with Scott before he left for work and got the kids dressed and started on breakfast-all just a little ahead of schedule. Then, literally as I was about to hit play on my workout, nausea came over me in waves. Okay, time to adjust course. What else is on my agenda that I can do while I sit still and wait for this to pass? Ah. Write a blog post. So here we are. And, what do you know, I think it’s about passed me by. Am I running “behind” now? Yes, but I am blessed with a life that affords me freedom to live by routine rather than schedule, so it’s really okay. And now I’ve had the opportunity to do two things on my agenda that would have waited till this afternoon, and I’ll have that time free to do something else! My kids are playing happily, and it’s cold outside, so it’s not like we need to get all our “work” done so we can get some outside time today.

I think Freedom is one of the best gifts God is awakening in me, little by little. Freedom from self judgement, freedom from comparison, freedom from shame, freedom from guilt, lies, mistaken beliefs, and by and by, from fear.

I cannot wait to see what else He awakens in me that I can’t even see yet!

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