Happy New Year 2013

A new year.  A new focus. A new look.

I'm glad it's a new year. 2012 was an eventful year for my family. We moved to London, Ontario in 2011 and in that one year made new friends and had some wonderful experiences. But only a few of us went - myself and Ed and our two youngest boys. We left the girls and their husbands and eight grandchildren, and our oldest son behind. I didn't think I'd be able to do it, but in spite of the intense grief, I was able to be present in my ministry and enjoy the challenges it presented. We learned a lot about ourselves and what we can accomplish.

However, we failed to realize how our choice would impact those we love and value the most, and in that, we learned what is most important to us. It's one thing to say what your priorities are and another thing to actually live them out. This year we learned how important is is to live out our priorities and what the consequences to ours and our family's emotional and mental health are when we make choices that deviate from them. We grew in many ways and learned the hard way to walk the talk.

God, first.  Family, second. Ministry/Work, third.

And now we're back in BC experiencing the blessing of leading High Point Community Church and enjoying it very much.

What would you be willing to give up in order to walk your talk?

Deep within each one of us is the answer to this question. You and I know the answer - and it's different for everyone. Sometimes our human desires cloud our thoughts and get in the way of seeing and hearing that answer. If you think you would never make a decision that would compromise your priorities in life - think again. It can be confusing to know just what God wants for us. There are so many conflicting messages that come at us - from friends, family and spiritual leaders. For me, I admit I'm still learning how to sort through the chatter and hear the voice of God - that still small voice - for it's the one that speaks truth to me.

I want to live in God's truth - authentically - the way He has revealed it to me - for my life. I think my ministry will grow as a result of living that way.

No, actually, I'm sure it will.

Every once in a while we all need a new focus. So this year I'm turning the dial, clicking the remote and changing the station. For me, it will be the equivalent to going from the chatter of a constant news channel to pbs and a calmer conversation. I want to talk less. I want to react less. I want to listen more - to others, to myself... to God. I want to pray more. I want to take time to be still and experience silence. Not just regular silence, but productive silence. I'm not sure if I can do this, but I'm going to try. I started this morning and I hope I can keep it up. Send me a link to this page if you see me veering from this path!

The New Year is a time for renewal, new beginnings, new thoughts and new adventures. I've had enough adventures for now, but definitely need a reboot.

A new look is important. Sometimes it's a new hair style, a new wardrobe or maybe a new house or car. For me, it's just a new look on this blog. I saw this background with books and since it's my goal to write one (one day soon, I hope) , I thought perhaps this would inspire me to write more. (Well, I have been writing for the Salvationist this winter and it's been nice to get a few encouraging comments through email, however, none of this year's columns have made it to the website.) Anyway, let's hope the new look brings the hoped for inspiration.

What about you? What is it you need for 2013?

grace.... Kathie


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