I'm not usually too big on New Year's, but I've sensed a need to especially reflect on last year this time around. Perhaps it's because so many important things happened; perhaps it's because I feel so unsure about this upcoming year. Whatever the reason, I've chosen to steal and idea from Kim and recap 2010... even though 2011 has already lost its new-year smell...
January consisted of filling out applications for graduate schools while I took a J-term course that focused on encouraging adults to participate in outreach ministries. This class was really different from my others because it was practical vs. theoretical. I also had the opportunity to observe what so many awesome churches are doing to love on their community- very exciting!
February flew by fast. As president of the student council that planned my college's spring revival, I was swapped organizing and coordinating. The beginning of spring semester reminded me that I wouldn't be there too much longer, and that made me sad...
After preaching in March's spring revival, I was thrust into a busy week of filling in for a the Greek teacher. Writing curriculum and teaching the students Biblical Greek reminded me why I loved my major and had a deep desire to teach.
At the request for a custom painting as a wedding gift, I fell in love with art once again in April. I had become so caught up in my studies that I completely forgot about how much it made me feel alive. The remainder of the semester did not permit me to paint much more, but I vowed that I would rekindle this love once I graduated.
May was a sad month. Most of the other seniors were ready to finish school and leave, but I sure wasn't. I loved my school and the people there. I love to learn and had never had seniorities before. The day came, and although I was happy to complete my degree (the first of its kind at the college), I was reluctant to leave.
In June I was ravenous to do art. After my husband and I packed up and moved to Kentucky for me to attend graduate school, I started creating like my life depended on it. It was such a freeing experience. I was super pleased that the duplex we moved into had plenty of space for me to set up my own personal studio!
July was spent traveling around our new home and further creativity.
Along came August with an answer to our prayers: Aaron received a job working at my grad school. Not only could we pay our bills, but I also would be practically getting my tuition for free! :) God has been so good to us. (You can read about my struggles with this, though, at my other blog)
I was worried that September and October would signify that my life was over. School started, and to my surprise, it was MUCH easier than I thought it would be. I still had plenty of time to play. Although I was thrilled that I had plenty of time to a) complete all I needed; b) to relax and have fun, I was very disappointed by the things that I was learning. Although interesting, I nonetheless was frustrated because my courses' content lack relevance to practical ministry. While I certainly love Biblical studies, I only love it because it has the capacity to change people. This led to lots of self-doubt and confusion about the nature of my calling. Something I am still trying to work out.
On a more positive note, my parents and grandparents came down for a visit. It was so nice to see them and show them our new home.
In November I was super busy prepping for my school's Christmas craft fair they put on each year. When I wasn't studying, I was in my studio mass-producing for the event.
Then came December. Classes ended, but I still felt frustrated about school. Was I even supposed to be there? I'm confident that I am, but at the moment I can't figure out what the heck I am doing. Something I am learning to do, though, is to seek first God's kingdom above all of my other desires. Art is great, but helping others, bringing peace and compassion to this world, is far more important than what I want.
I am still figuring out what this exactly looks like in my life. I have so much to learn this upcoming year about myself and how I fit into God's plan for this world. Whatever it is, I am super excited about being a part of it. :)
P.S. More thoughts about what I've been learning about all of this in my other blog's post.