What I learned in 2020…and why I’m not writing a typical “year in review” post.

Every year, I write a “year in review” post where I list the biggest and most important things that happened throughout the year. Since 2020 wasn’t a normal year, I’m not going to write a normal post.

2020 was a difficult year- I don’t do well with the unknown. I’m a planner and a control freak, so not knowing what comes next is super hard. As a Christian, we are called to trust God always, but sometimes it’s hard to let go of YOUR plans and trust in HIS plan. I learned some things from this crazy experience we called 2020.

  1. Things can change in an instant.

We were doing life and everything was great and normal, and then a global pandemic showed up. I thought we’d be out of school for two weeks. We went back to school eight months later. Then, all of our additional activities were shut down. We literally had nothing to do and nowhere to go but we spent lots of time together and we made it work. We even managed to have fun.

2. Be grateful for what you have.

You may not have everything you want. Most of us don’t. When you actually have time to stop, sit still and reflect, you will find you have more than what you need and plenty to be thankful for. 2020 taught me to be more gracious and actually make time to do so.

3. Find joy and beauty where you can.

bright blooming goldenrods on thin stems in field
Photo by Ellie Burgin on Pexels.com

I very clearly remember walking with my neighbor one day and noticing a goldenrod flower on the side of the road. Goldenrod is a weed, and it’s pesky, since most of us are allergic to it. However, the flower was a vibrant yellow and even thoughI typically regard it as a nuisance, I noticed just how pretty it really is. Have you ever seen an entire field blooming with goldenrod? It’s beautiful.

Put your hope in the right thing- JESUS.

Jesus is the only thing that can bring us out of the place we are in. Healthcare, vaccines and practicing good hygiene are all important, but they can’t save us. If there is one thing 2020 has taught me loud and clear, it’s that Jesus is the only thing in my life that is constant and certain. Everything else can change in an instant, but He will always remain. God has a plan, and while we rumble through this life not knowing his plan or why things happen, He knows. That’s sometimes hard for me to swallow, but it’s true.

Lessons aside, 2020 wasn’t all bad. We had to cancel a vacation, but we were able to save some money. We were finally able to complete a large remodeling project we have been trying to finish for seven years now. We were also able to spend a large amount of time with one another and enjoy each other’s company. We were adopted by a stray cat and a stray dog who have both become members of our family. We finally replaced our aging, no air-conditioning van. Some good things happened in 2020, too.

I genuinely feel like we learn something every year. 2020 taught us a lot. While it wasn’t all bad, I am sure I’ve never been so happy to see a year end before.

Happy New Year, friends. May 2021 bless you and bring you great joy.

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