I’m not much one for surprises, really, but I do like change. So I like that the new year comes, as expected, every 365 (or 366) days, and I also love that it brings about new beginnings and fresh starts and the sense for everyone that we’re on the cusp of possibility. Sitting around a dinner table for eight with a beautifully radiant group of women a few weeks back, I shared what I most looked forward to in 2015–the fact that we (our little family) didn’t really know what good was in store, and the fact that I’m committed to diving into book writing this year (whoa). It felt great to put myself out there to friends new and old, to actually SAY I’d be writing a book, and to think about the year to come in a glinty, sort of romanticized kind of way. 2015 was attractive to me at the dinner table that night, and it still is (and maybe more so). But the very next morning, my husband Jason got hit by a truck and lived to tell about it, and that phone call and these past few weeks have ushered in 2015 a bit differently than I’d imagined.
In the midst of J’s crazy (and miraculous) accident and recovery, we’ve had moments of immense gratitude, a magnificent array of emotions, a new and different kind of juggling with our house/days/kiddos/life, the holidays(!), lessons in grace and humility, and a fresh experience with the depth of love between two people in covenantal marriage. I am thankful for nearly all of these things, despite the fact that many have been harder than we could have imagined. I will hope to unpack more of the accident and our experience somewhere down the road, but for now (and hopefully to quell concern), J is home, walking on his own two feet, and improving daily. If you saw him out and about, you wouldn’t know his body faced a truck head on two weeks ago, but he is certainly still healing. It will be something, to look back together in a year, or ten years, and to see what has come of one split second moment on an icy December morning. For now we are just so grateful–that he is here, that God has more for J to do on this earth, that our littles still have their daddy, that I’m not trying to forage a path into the new year without him.
Today I was able to sneak away to a nearby coffee shop during nap time, and to soak in God’s word and spend time in prayer and reflection over the year ahead. I’ve been aching to define a word for 2015 as I’ve done previously in 2011, 2012 and 2014, and I’m confident I’ve landed on the perfect fit for these next twelve months: intention.
Intention: In Latin, intentio, defined as ‘stretching or purpose’. Derived from the Latin intendere, which, translated involves a host of definitions that sync beautifully with what I feel God has placed on my heart:
…to have a course of action as one’s purpose or objective…design for a particular purpose or end…to have in mind as something to be done or brought about…to direct the mind on…directed with strained or eager attention…concentrated…
As I prayed this afternoon, digging into one scripture verse I’d heard over and over since asking God to take charge of my 2015, I landed firmly on “intention” as the guide and filter for my steps in the coming year. I have such peace, settling on a focal point that I’m trusting God will honor in the days ahead.
Eph 4.1, 15-16: Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God…15 we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. 16 He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.
These words will be my lamplight in 2015, in the midst of the good and the bad, the expected and unexpected, the scary and the crazy-beautiful. We forage a path with God or without God, but with Him, He gives us grace for the journey. He generously offers us boldness and courage in the smallness of the daily, in the magnitude of loss and love and life change, in the heart-stopping phone call on a random Thursday morning, in the book whose unwritten pages have a purpose yet unseen.
cheers to a year of living with intention in every way possible. and love.