2015 kicked off with quite a bit of promise before I was sentenced to my bed for the greater part of the year. Yet in the midst of a trying year, I proposed to Stephanie and graduated with my business degree from the University of Cincinnati.
As I reflect back on 2015 and look to the year ahead, here are four main takeaways I’m bringing with me into 2016:
This year consisted of days on end staring at the ceiling and deprived of sleep with one physical issue arising after another, leaving me feeling like a punching bag. I often found myself thinking, “Can’t I catch a break?”
Lying on my back in the middle of the night, I contemplated the truths of the Bible:
“Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial…”
“Consider it pure joy when you encounter trials of various kinds.”
James 1 promises that these trials develop perseverance and make me mature and complete. Throughout seemingly endless physical trials this year, I could trust God was developing perseverance in me that ultimately is for my good. Not to mention my ability to trust God and press forward with faith that the best is yet to come was multiplied like never before.
Having only a couple hours a day upright in my chair for much of the year forced me to be strategic. I needed to leverage the limited time that I did have out of bed. Some days that looked like simply finishing an assignment; other days, using the small window of chair time I had for lunch with a friend to face-to-face. Throughout the process, I was honing my ability to prioritize- because I had no other choice.
Heading into 2016, how can I put first things first? I want my time to reflect my priorities.
It may be easy to get frustrated in the moment. Is this going to last forever? Looking back at the year, I have to keep in mind that a given moment is just a snapshot in the entirety of my life, and this life is just a sliver in the lens of eternity.
To further drive home this point, Stephanie and I are working through Francis Chan’s book, You and Me Forever; subtitled, “marriage in light of eternity.” With our wedding approaching in 2016, keeping things in perspective and preparing for how to best leverage our marriage in light of the fact that this earth is only our temporary home will be a focus in the new year.
With my college degree officially in hand and a soon-to-be spouse to share life with by my side, the positives of this year undoubtedly outshone the difficult days.
With 2015 in the rearview mirror, I’m excited for what’s ahead.
2016 is shaping up to be the best year yet.
Stephanie back in action on the YouTube channel with this week’s video taking a look back through the highs and lows of 2015:
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