Monday, January 8, 2018

When the New Year Starts and You Feel Lost


An uncomfortable feeling set in on December 31. I already knew my word for 2018—Enough, but unlike a few weeks ago when Enough felt like a good fit, I was getting nervous about it. By January 1, feeling uncomfortable moved to feeling unsettled. I was restless and unsure about what to expect this year and where my word Enough fit in.

We’ve been in an unresolved situation for quite a while now, but for the past 3 years, something was in the works when New Year’s Day rolled around—plans to try something new, upcoming doctor visits, insurance red tape to work through…whatever it was had me busy. This year, there’s nothing for me to work on, and it has me feeling lost.

I keep thinking there has to be something I can do, but it’s out of my hands…and I’m struggling to accept that.

Maybe that’s where my word fits in. I’ve done all I can do and it was enough. Now, all I can do is keep praying. I don’t even want to tell you that my immediate thought was, But that’s not enough! And in the very same moment, I reminded myself that it is more than enough.

I have to wait and see where God leads us and what He asks me to do next. I need to wait on Him and keep praying. {Tweet this} (Why is that still so difficult?!?) And be ready to move when He calls me to move.

I need to trust Him because I know that no matter what I can and cannot do, He is in control…and that’s always better than the control I’d like to think I have.

Concerning this I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might leave me; but He has said to me, 
“My grace is sufficient for you [My lovingkindness and My mercy are more than enough—always available—regardless of the situation]; for [My] power is being perfected [and is completed and shows itself most effectively] in [your] weakness.” 
Therefore, I will all the more gladly boast in my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ [may completely enfold me and] may dwell in me.

Afterward:

After writing this post, I realized I started feeling better. Sometimes identifying what’s causing the unsettled feeling is enough to calm it down. But, what really brings peace to our restless hearts is inviting Jesus into every moment. {Tweet this} (I don’t pretend I’m an expert at this.) I do this through journaling, reading God’s Word, and of course, prayer.

If you’re hesitant to try journaling, I was too. When I finally decided to try it, I was preoccupied with perfection (no mistakes, no crossed out words, and only black or blue ink.) Eventually, I was able to let go of my need for perfection. I realized that my journal is for me, not for others to read. I have more mistakes and crossed out words when I’m upset, and when I’m upset, my journal is the place to pour that out. So, I don’t worry about that anymore. Oh, and now I love color—all sorts of colored ink, gel pens, and felt tip markers. The more color, the better.

If you’re looking for an easy way to try journaling without cost or commitment, click on my Resources page, and help yourself to my journaling printables.

How are you doing so far this year?

In Christ,
Laura


19 comments:

  1. Mistakes, crossed out words! Yes, that's my journal too -- and scribbled quotes from books I'm reading or from Scripture alongside a faint inscription of one word that's supposed to remind me to do something as soon as I'm done with my quiet time. I think we all need a place to "dump" our thoughts and prayers, and thanks be to God, He is glad to receive it all.
    Blessings to you, Laura, as you experience the outworking of all God wants to do through your word for 2018.

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  2. Yes, Laura, enough. As we finished 2017 and entered 2018, we face many uncertainties. I realize I have done enough - perhaps too much...for sure too much. Sometimes, we need to Be still and know He is God. Somtimes our "doing" is simply interference. Sometimes, enough is enough....all the time He is enough. We can be still and know He is God...not I...and trust Him quietly. My journals are my heart - messes and all. One day, I pray my family will read them and know that.

    Your spirit is sweet, gentle, teachable and sensitive to Him. I'm so glad you shared! Blessings to you!

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  3. I haven't quite gotten into the rhythm of the new year just yet. I'm still fighting through depression, anxiety and exhaustion. I am just taking one day at a time and trying not to put too much on myself. I use to journal a lot more, but over the last few years I've really tapered off. Perhaps I should try it again.

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  4. Journaling helps me, too. I still struggle with the perfectionist part. When I use color-which I love to do-I want it to be consistent and stand for certain things (e.g., my favorite blue for God's Word, hot pink for don't forget, etc) which disrupts the flow. I'm working on surrendering that to God!

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  5. I love the word "enough" and actually have it on a piece of artwork I hang over my mantle. For me the it is a reminder that I am enough in Christ.

    Your process of beginning to feel unsettled as the New Year approached sounded like clear confirmation that God was steering you in the right direction. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

    PS Journaling is a wonderful outlet. One of my favotite things to do.

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  6. I know how it feels--you make a new year's goal and everything conspires against you. But I'm thankful that God gives me a fresh start. He's also showing me to extend grace to myself if a daily goal isn't completely met, and to be grateful for whatever I accomplished. Glad you felt better after you wrote the post!

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  7. I love your One Word and recognize your feeling. My new year started with the flu.

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  8. Enough is such a great word. I know God will use it in unique ways in your year, Laura.

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  9. I find journaling helps me tremendously. My notebooks are mostly my thoughts as I read my devotional or do Bible Study each day. For me, I love a #2 pencil. Always have. Hardly erase - just cross out and keep going.When I have gone back to reread my own words, I have come to realize the crossing out (or erasing) are all a part of the process in working things out with God. You have chosen a good word and it will be interesting to see how it unfolds in your life. Somehow I think you will discover it was more than enough :) Blessings!

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  10. So grateful for the peace that is available when we will invite God in.....and what a blessing that trusting Him is enough and He is more than enough!!

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  11. When that thing is out of our hands? THAT IS EXACTLY WHEN WE HAVE TO TRUST THAT HE IS ENOUGH. Doesn't mean the ending is the way we want it to be or the solution looks like we thought it would but Jehovah El Roi, the God who sees? He's got it and it's ENOUGH. Now, to walk in the peace of that enough? That is the challenge. And, yes you can pick my brain any time you wish. CreateSpace is a super tool for self-publishing. That's where I've learned so much. ox

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  12. Laura this is right on. I needed to hear this and WOW thanks for sharing so openly. (hugs)

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  13. I love the word ENOUGH (probably as much as I hate it!) It can feel so full, pregnant with possibility. And yet I find myself using it wondering AM I ENOUGH? DID I DO ENOUGH? IS GOD ENOUGH? Those questions scare me sometimes, but I keep coming back to HIS grace. It's not about my ENOUGH but about trusting HIS!

    Praying this year shows you all you need about HIS enough!

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  14. I am relearning the value of writing it down. Thanks for sharing. Stopping by from #gracemoments linkup

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  15. Jesus is enough for us, more than enough. But only when I keep my focus on Him instead of the waves of life. Thanks for this, Laura. It's so easy to shift our focus and lose perspective.

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  16. I pray that whatever red tape you are facing and challenge that is happening right now, whether it's health or otherwise for you and/or a loved one, that you keep clinging to Jesus! (BTW, It took me 6 times until I was finally able to leave a message. the captcha thing that shows all the pictures is intense and kept kicking me off your site)

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  17. Wow! After reading your comment on my blog today, I came to read about your word of "enough" and you are so right! We do seem to be facing a similar path, as the Lord is speaking "sufficient" to me, as I continue to learn more about laying down my own position of self-sufficiency. It is not easy, but yet, like you, I am finding that the peace that Jesus brings when I do come to Him and lay myself down to find His sufficiency, He meets me with such peace! I will keep you in my prayers, as we journey this path together. Blessings to you!

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  18. I always seem to get tested in that area when I'm working on a specific word. I love how writing about it gave you peace and yes, I'm also working on letting go of my need for journal perfection! <3

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  19. Thank you for this! I have been feeling this way since the new year started. Unsettled and a little unproductive. Not sure why. I have not even had time to sit down and set my goals yet. Well, maybe it is more that I have not had the focus to set them. Praying to get past this soon!

    Hopping over from #Salt&Light

    Blessings,

    Amy @ The Quiet Homemaker

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Thank you for sharing your thoughts!