Hi, pals. It’s been a bit. 2017 has been a year, right? It started out with the second half of an incredible year of teaching but also with watching people I care for suffer deeply. The summer was spent in the wintry Southern Hemisphere with all of my favorite kiwis and it was all I wanted and then some. And the months since August, well here’s the feelings on that.
This year, God is a god of peace amidst chaos. I chose the word “restoration” as my word for 2017 and it has turned out to be a year of the demolition that precedes restoration. In these 12 months, God has torn down so many ideas I had about who I am - as a woman, as a teacher, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a Christian, a human - so many of them have been bulldozed. God has been tearing down all of the lies I have told myself and all of the lies I’ve been fed by the world. I started the year with the naive idea that I had the timeline for God’s word of “restoration” figured out, too, that the restoration would be finished when the calendar switched to 2018. God demolished that idea, too. I’m still very much in the demolition phase. The year, especially these last four months has been full on tear down, and I’ve yet to see the benefit. I have watched so much of what I thought I knew get wrecked, and honestly I’m not sure it’s finished. But still, He is good.
And now I wait and try to practice accepting God’s peace. Not the happy clappy peace where life is good and I eat a lot of chocolate and work is a breeze. God is teaching me about the peace where I have to settle into the broken bits of my life and understand that there is some purpose, though I may not see it. God is teaching me about peace that prevails when I hold the broken pieces of my life and I wait. I can’t throw them away to make room for something new to grow. I can’t piece them together into something different. Restoration in the form of peace is the restoration of my soul and my mindset, while I leave the messy life messy for a while.
I thought I knew what this year would be, and I was mostly wrong. But I also have grown in ways I never could have anticipated and 2018 is coming.
As always, I love you for reading this, whoever you are.