Monday, January 19, 2009

Another Year, Another Plan

When I was in middle school, I wanted to be in high school. I was sure I would feel more confident and more important then.

When I was in high school, I just wanted to be 16 so I could drive.

Then when I was 16, I wanted to be 18 so I would be a "legal" adult, and would have a valid reason to tell my parents I should be able to do what I want.

When I turned 18, I could not wait to get to college, discover my freedom and start a new life adventure.

Once I was in college, I wanted to be 21, because I thought all problems would end if I could ever reach legal drinking age. Ha!

When I turned 21, it was not that big of a deal though. I just wanted to do good in school, so I could get of college and get a job.

I got out of college at the age of 23, found a job, and then desperately wished I didnt have to go to work every day, but looked forward to when I could get married.

Once I got married six months later, I looked forward to the day when I could be a mommy.

Three years later when I became a mommy, there were days when I yearned for the days of teenagedom and college freedom again!

It seems like my whole life, I have wasted time and energy looking for something else. Searching and yearning for what lie just beyond my reach, and when I met that goal, immediately creating a new goal in my mind.

I think that is pretty normal for most people, and as long as we keep things in perspective, be content with what we have, and appreciate each stage in life we will be okay - however, that does not mean it is the right way to be. It is Gods choice to give us every new day, each first breath of a new morning, and the blessing of life. So in my heart, I know God desires that we treasure where we are, not just where we could be or want to be.

Today is my birthday - the big, whopping, ugly-sounding 42 years old birthday. Wow, I cant even believe I had to type a number that high. When did that happen? When did I get old enough to have a child in high school? When did I get all these wrinkles? And thank goodness for Miss Clairol.

I used to like birthdays, even look forward to them, and get excited about getting some presents.....but now....uuuuummmmmm..... not so much. But the good thing is, I no longer waste time yearning to meet that next age level anymore! I would be perfectly happy staying right here, or maybe a few years ago. Smiles.

Each year when I have to face another birthday, I try to take a quick mental assessment of what I accomplished over the past year.... did that year matter in my life? Did I make a difference? Did I live for Christ? Was I a good mother and wife, daughter, friend, niece, sister, neighbor?

Overall, I think 2008 was a pretty good year. I will not bore with you all the details, but in light of my many mistakes and falling short of the glory of God each and every day, I believe that God did good things in my heart last year, and did great things in and through me, through the experiences that He brought me to, and brought me through. Through the people I met, the friends I made, the family I love, and the experiences He put in my life.

But I cant help wondering......what is just beyond my reach this year? I dont mean another age marker, but in Gods plan for me? I dont mean a self serving goal wrapped in pride or personal desire, but a new level or accomplishment that God wants me to climb to?

What is it that God has in store for me? Is there a goal or spiritual mile marker that He desires that I reach this year, that I may not even be aware of? What amazing things is God doing in my life this year that will excite me so much, that I will stand in speechless awe of His sovereignty?

Wow, just writing that made me get goose bumps all over! My prayer this year is that I truly live for Christ. Whether Christ keeps me where I am, or leads me to new adventures and goal heights, I just pray that whatever I do, is His will.

I feel in my heart that God is trying to tell me something. In years past, if God was trying to get something across to me, I felt a sense of anxiousness each and every day. I would find myself searching the bible, browsing websites, praying, looking for clues to drop in my lap or maybe be written on a big billboard somewhere. I desperately wanted to know what was on Gods mind......and eventually, in one way or another, He always got through to me somehow. Sometimes it took years, other times it took days.... but I seemed to get the message eventually.

Lately, the last few weeks, I have been having that feeling again. I feel the Holy Spirit tugging at my heart, and almost feel like a little girl waiting at the mailbox each day, waiting for the mail to arrive with a $10 bill in it from granny! I know God is reaching out to me.

I dont know what God has in store for me in 2009, but whatever it is, I am already looking forward to it! As I kick off yet another year, which from a mirror standpoint I would like to defer, but from a spiritual standpoint, I am at the edge of my seat.

So, will you pray for me? Pray that I will be still enough to hear His voice, and aware enough to know His commands when He tells me. Pray that I will hear His voice sooner, than later. Pray that when He does reveal His plan for me, that I will be able to accept it, embrace it, and move forward with it - even if it is so far out of my comfort zone, that I feel it is far beyond my capabilities. I have learned, that if we feel God has told to do something that we think is completely ridiculous in our mind, that we have most definitely heard Him correctly! If His plans were easy, it wouldnt take much faith to follow!

I am always reminded of my life theme verse, it still appears in my life quite often, and is also the verse on my bible cover: Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not harm you; plans for a future and a hope."

I am still in utter amazement at the plans I have already seen Him carry out in my life, and in the lives of those I am close to. I know God still has more plans for me, and I have found that the key to unlocking that plan, is having a relationship with Him. Not just a prayer life, a relationship.

It takes a relationship to truly be able to communicate openly and honestly with someone, and only then can two way conversations take place. My plan, is to continue building that relationship with my Savior, so that I can hear His plan loud and clear when He chooses to share it with me.

Friend, God is always waiting for us to open our spiritual ears and eyes, and then when we do hear and see His will, to embrace that plan with a full heart. That is my personal goal for 2009, even if it means accepting another birthday.

There is no better place to be than right smack in the middle of Gods will.

Another Year, Another PlanSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend


Angie said...

I will continue to pray for you, that Gods voice will be louder, clearer and unmistakably the tug at you heart that you will not even question your emotions or feelings. I know the fear that we can experience stepping outside our comfort zones. I have recently taken a baby step out of my comfort zone. It is still a nervous feeling for me but I am excited knowing it was Him leading me to take that first step and having faith that goods things will come from this move.
I look forward to reading about your experiences that He will give you.
In His Name,

Stacey said...

Did you know waiting was an action verb? It is. I'm no English scholar, but during a hard time of waiting I began "feeling" like I was wasting time and not hearing from Him. I was lead to the word "wait." Did a devotional on it, Wait. It's a tough one. Just like "resting" is an action verb. I will be praying for you.

Carol from N.Y. said...

May the Lord richly bless you in all you do!

PattiVZ said...

You are 42???? Goodness, girl, you don't look a day over 35 at most! Well, HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Enjoy these days. Enjoy even some waiting time, enjoy some resting, AND enjoy quiet times of prayer in 2009 all amid the busyness of life all around.

Joyful said...

Happy Birthday Tracie!

I love your enthusiasm and excitement. I can see your wide-eyed wonder as you eagerly anticipate what the Lord has in store for you. I will continue to pray for you. May the Lord clearly reveal His plan(s) for you this year. May you live BIG for God and know the thrill that comes with following hard and being smack dab in the center of His will for you.

May you experience God in a fresh new way as you seek Him with all your heart.
Love & prayers,

A Simple Country Girl said...

Happy BIrthday Tracie. Mine was 10 days prior to yours. Having a January birthday is great, we tend to focus on the new year being our new year with Christ. I do hope and pray for to be in perfect line with God's will for you this year!

A Simple Country Girl

P.S. How is your dad's wife? And your sister?

Shanda said...

Hey Tracie,
You came to mind today so I began praying for you and dropped by your blog to see how you are doing.

I completely understand your sense of anticipation and I will be praying that God will reveal His plans in amazing ways to you this year! May it be one of the best years of your life! Happy belated birthday!

In Him,
(from your She Speaks Group)

Charlene Kidd said...

Sorry I missed your birthday. I hope you had a wonderful day, and you are still younger than me, just a babe!!!

Kimby said...

Hi, Tracie!
Don't let the age thing scare you -- I just turned the "big 5-0" this past year and it's everything I never imagined it would be! :)

Two weeks ago, I was content to be an "at home" writer, composer, etc. and then God nudged me to help a young family at church (my friend died of breast cancer at age 26; her husband & 3 small children were in desperate need of "TLC".) Surprise, surprise, it's back to "mothering" again, just when my bones & joints said, "WHEW, we're finally DONE!" (By the way, how are your elbows?!)

I really liked how you described that feeling of knowing "something's up" with God -- I call it: "antici-patience!" :)

God will reveal what, when and where -- in the meantime, enjoy RIGHT NOW!

Your "elder" friend,