Jan 1, 2012

Out with the Old....

Today.
The New Year.
Every year I am challenged to get rid of something old that may be holding me back and to try something new that will move me forward or make me better.   I suppose I have a couple of practical things, but what really comes to mind when I think about the last year was how much I grown spiritually, and I like the current path I am on.

 So the new is to keep on keeping on.

This year I have seen such amazing growth in how my husband and I are both teaming up to be intentional about how we make choices and raise our children to reflect who we are following after.

God.

Some of the choices have been a stretch, some of been an epiphany ("why did we not do this before?"),
and sometimes it seems awkward since we've "never done it that way before."
Ainsley got a new bike for Christmas and we took her out in the front to learn how to ride it.  Tessa thought the greatest thing in the world was to run after her laughing her head off.  Wherever, Ainsley went, there went Tessa about three feet behind.
A few things came to mind looking at these pictures.  Ainsley never went too fast that Tessa couldn't keep up, Tessa never got tired of running after her and thinking it was SO MUCH FUN, and also, how completely ridiculous it looked.  Like a baby duck following the Gander.

I could draw some correlations here in how I've followed after God.  

Ainsley is super duper cautious.  In fact, she was barely creaking that bike along.  Tone has always wished for a dare devil kind of kid that could be on a dirt bike by age five like he was.  He struck out with cautious Hunter, and clearly, Ainsley isn't going to be that kid either.  Poor poor man ( but the over-protective Mother in me is somewhat gleeful though that my kids aren't on some sort of death wish hunt like Tone was at that age).  Anyhow, Ainsley always went slow enough for Tessa to keep up.  I think God works the same.  He pushes us at a pace where we can always keep up if we stay focused on Him.  And Tessa had a definite bead on her sister. The curvier Ainsley rode (lets just say stearing is not a strong point yet), the more fun Tessa thought she was having as she shrieked with laughter running after her. With Tess, Tone's still got a chance.

Also, Tessa looked ridiculous.  I was very amused by the third born child I birthed who has some wacky gene from who knows what wackadoodle side of the family.  I'm not sure how that could have possibly have been fun.  At first I thought it was funny.  But she kept doing it.
And going.
And going.
Then I thought, is she playing with a full deck of cards?  Truth.
(Admit it.  Sometimes secretly you think these things about your kids. The horror!)

I've discovered following after God is addicting like that.  It becomes more and more addicting when you are doing what you are doing because you see Jesus right in front of you and He is the focus.  Pushing myself to run just for the hay is boring. Take it from an 18 month year old...chasing a bike now, is awesome fun.  Pushing yourself to do good Jesus things when you are looking at the action rather than the person is lame and you'll get tired.  It's the "try hard, do good for a while, fail" syndrome.  Raise your hand if you've been there, done that! (By the way, mine was up). But when I focus on the One who saved me and look at Him and His attributes, those things just sort of flow from me and I am not feeling like it's a whole lot of work, but it's a whole lot of joy.  And when others around me see some of the choices, well, it's counter cultural.  It looks ridiculous.  They wonder if I'm playing with a full deck of cards.
So for New Years, I want to keep my focus.  I don't want to focus on a resolution or the action, but rather on the personhood of Jesus.  This last year, there have been many actions and choices made but they've come from a direct focus. I've been challenged this year, I have been transformed as I look at Him and what it would be like to be like Him, and I want to keep that focus dead on.

Happy New Year!

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