a muse

The time has come . . . {My mind always finishes that line with “the walrus said, to speak of many things, of shoes and ships and sealing wax, of cabbages and kings.” And yes, I did just write that all from memory. 😉 }

But in all seriousness, I think it is completely natural that as the new year approaches, we often think of what this past year has held for us. I feel so overwhelmed by God’s goodness. *tries desperately not to cry* *gives up as I will probably cry during this post anyway*

My word for 2018 was Fearless, and while I had a tiny idea of what that would look like, I had no idea it would be anywhere near as far-reaching and as full of learning as it actually was. This year truly was one of stepping out in faith, embracing being fearless and confident in who God created me to be, and walking in my godly identity as a child of the one true God with His love as my only motivator. I’m certainly not perfect and this is definitely an area where I still struggle, however, looking back to where I started off this year, I can’t even begin to describe my excitement over the fact that I have come leaps and bounds since then.

One of the main things that still blows my mind was the Glory Writer’s Retreat that I created and hosted in May. I know and am always telling people how it was so God. There is no way I could ever do anything like that on my own. And as I look into creating the second retreat, my mind explodes over how much is involved. God clearly orchestrated the event and brought each and every young woman there for a reason. It was beyond crazy to me. Who invites 15 people who have never met to share an entire week in the same house together? What happens when you get 15 women who have never met and some don’t even know each other together? There’s a lot of risk in that venture, but it was the most God-filled, special, uplifting, and encouraging time that I have ever experienced. I marvel at what God did that week. And I marvel at the fact that He allowed me, a simple, ordinary chick with a heart to serve Him to make it happen.

I also took a trip on my own. Might not sound like much to a lot of people, but traveling across the country all on my lonesome with not another human to watch my back was definitely a new experience, and one that I am proud to say went off quite well, all things considered. I got to explore a beautiful part of the country with, be still my heart, mountains and waterfalls. It was a glorious experience and I am so happy that it ended up working out.

This year was a huge exercise in becoming my own person in so many ways. It’s really hard to explain, but I felt like I did a lot of growing up.

I also went through a hard rough patch at work, that honestly is still an ongoing battle, but is something that I learned to live with. Keeping my head in the right place of being a daughter of the King was and is incredibly important to my well being. I also pushed through a lot of depression and oppression as a result of a lot of things that were going on. Negativity and my own insecurities seemed to make it worse and it took some time to unbury myself from the difficult issues I was dealing with. Through it all, I learned so much about who God says I am, and the importance of remembering to draw my joy and purpose from Him, not from myself, my superiors, or my work.

Something else I am continually learning is twofold. To hold my own plans lightly, and to trust that His timing is best. I struggled with that a lot this month as I had so many ideas for business, website, writing. But I came down with the flu that turned into a sinus and ear infection. Spending two weeks in bed or recovering was not what I had in mind for this month. I had hoped to use the time I wasn’t spending on blogging wisely and invest it into some other business ventures that have gotten away from me of late. But alas, that was not to be and I missed out on the whole Christmas bandwagon. Looking back, I know there is nothing I can do to change what happened and no amount of stressing out about it is going to make any of my goals come true, so I have decided to let it be and move on, knowing that God’s plan is best anyway. It’s not easy, but life is life and sometimes I just need to be flexible.

One last thing I’ll touch on, is the importance of putting God first and time spent in His presence is of the utmost necessity. To keep my mind in a place of peace and reliance on Him, remembering to take and make the time to spend with Him whether that be in prayer, in His word, or in worship, is something that I am hoping to take with me into this new year. “Busy” is no longer an excuse that I am going to let myself use. Thought life may be becoming busier than ever, I plan on keeping my peace and my relationship with God. Too much is going on to just sit passively on the sidelines. God has great plans in store for us, I can just feel it, and I don’t want to let it fly by.

I hope you didn’t mind my rambly muse of a post as I reflected a bit on what has been accomplished this year. This is by no means everything that happened this year, but it’s just a small sampling of the milestones that have come and gone.

Thank you for being a reader here. It means the world to me that a community has formed around Ruffles and Grace and I hope to bring you all better and bigger things as we grow.

Love, and by God’s Grace,