NEW YEAR‚ÄôS RESOLUTION REDO

New year’s resolutions have always perplexed me. I understand why we make them but don’t understand how they seemed doomed and poorly adopted by most (including myself). Hearing about them on the radio, social media and in ads on TV, I’ve come to regard them mostly as holiday rebound. Pondering over mine for a week, I’ve gathered a few good ideas worth sharing.

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Melinda Gates has an original idea- not adopting a resolution- but focusing on a special WORD to center her thoughts and behaviors towards throughout the year. That’s a reasonable, and possibly attainable goal. A recent devotional challenged me to ask GOD what my resolution should be, rather than choose myself. I think that’s an excellent place to start. I dare not ask my family for input as I’d likely end up with a long list.

Our church has adopted the book of Proverbs from the Bible for us to study as a congregation for the new year. This has aided in getting my mind oriented towards a better ATTITUDE. Attitudes are the center of where our actions form so it’s also an excellent place to start.

Attending an event recently, I met an interesting person who discussed her PASSION and that she “couldn’t NOT do it” referring to her horse hobby. It got me to think about my passions and if those might need to be included in my resolutions? One did, but two seem in line. When I refer to “in line” I’m referring to God given passions. How does one know when it’s a God-given passion? It’s when it benefits you and others. Therefore, I realized one passion I have needs to go. (I’m not going to bore you here with details.)

What about CIRCUMSTANCES? Those may be beyond our control and quite taxing. When someone’s struggling, it’s nearly impossible to adopt new behaviors or set higher standards. So, going back to the second idea, asking the Great Creator above for input seems prudent. Resolutions are great ideals but don’t need to make us feel worse about ourselves if we fall short (and we ALL come up short).

Finally, there’s that “F” word- FORGIVENESS. It keeps popping up randomly. I’m wondering if I need to do that and/or if I will need to when I try to avoid my prior passion…..

RAINBOWS & BUTTERFLIES

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Sometimes we are inexplicably given the gift of a sign or message.  That sign can be the thing that helps us to persevere, hang on, or power through difficult times.  Having had a few trials myself, I have come to recognize two spontaneous messages of hope in my life.  Those two signs I find comfort in are: monarch butterflies and double rainbows.  (Nope, I do not have any imaginary friends or see unicorns- in case you are wondering.)

One of these signs appeared while I was¬†vacationing at the beach.¬†Longing for a modicum of peace, I decided to take a solo walk along the shore.¬† It was a bright, breezy day with vast, blue skies exploding in every direction.¬† I knew the crashing waves would drown out the sounds of the world and the smell of salt and laughter of gulls¬†would relieve my internal and external tension.¬† I began to talk to God about¬†all that was¬†bothering me¬†(He already knew, but hey?) and asked for guidance, wisdom, clarity and anything else He might throw in for good measure.¬†¬†All of a sudden, out of¬†NO WHERE¬†appeared a lone, monarch butterfly.¬† It was bright yellow¬†and fluttered¬†about me¬†for a good, five minutes.¬† It’s spontaneous presence was awe inspiring and¬†felt like¬†a divine message of hope was hitting my “Inbox.”

My¬†second “message moment”¬†occurred more recently.¬†¬†A friend was¬†sharing what she was enduring over the phone.¬†¬†By chance, I looked¬†up and saw not one, but¬†TWO spectacular rainbows.¬† Their concise, colorful arches expanded the sky end to end and took my breath away.¬† Immediately, I¬†pulled my car over and told her to hang on because I was sending her something¬†via text RIGHT then.¬†¬†The¬†shot was a “shout from the sky”¬†telling us¬†to hang on because the same God who promised Noah no more floods was still with¬†her too!¬† She agreed they were perfect and perfectly timed.

Some might¬†reason these two phenomena away with scientific facts.¬† That’s okay.¬† I still get to choose that they hold deeper meaning for me.¬† I think I need¬†these symbols of ¬†hope to keep on keeping on.¬†Also, I like hearing from the Creator, no matter¬†His medium.¬† (And, no, I still haven’t, and don’t plan on seeing any unicorns.)

close up of butterfly pollinating on flower
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