I had to recognize that I have had many prayers answered and new encounters with the Divine, even when I wasn't at my best. That is grace. I thank God for the times during this year that God overlooked the me that was being presented because He knew the me on the inside. That too is grace.
I had to also consider that my life could have gone a different path or ended at any point this year. While I am not considered unhealthy, I have not cared for my body as I knew I should. When I think of others that transitioned into eternity this year due to health issues they may or may not have known they had, I know that I have been given another chance to change. This is another form of grace that I cannot take for granted.
This year has been probably one of the least creative for me, despite the urges to move into that vein. I don't know why I didn't go into the studio more often or why I didn't work on The Esther Process when I was well aware that the writing has to happen in the trenches; there is no better time to put pen to paper. Perhaps I was discouraged, knowing that after the book is written there may be no platform upon which to build an audience.
This morning after having spent time in the studio with paint on my hands, I realize that I have no excuse. I was missing out on being creative, despite the desire to go into that place.
After the lessons that I have learned, I realize that entering into a new year has to mean more this time. I have seen 37 new years; each time, I have made commitments and vows. This entrance is not the same because of what I experienced this past year: the sacrifices that had to be made, the answered prayers, and the losses that can never be recovered.
I regret some things. I cannot be so vain and proud to say I regret nothing. But I also am celebrating the next season of my life, knowing that I must enter it with consecration, creativity, and caution. This early morning, so cold and full of last things, I know that I am not entering alone. God is with me. My husband is with me. My family is with me.
So I stand and breathe in the cold air. I pay homage to Wanda and Amie and all the others that entered eternity in 2014. I renounce the lack of creativity with each click of my camera. My paintbrushes wait to paint a new picture for the new year. And this is how it must be on the cusp of a new season and not just a new year....