I love Christmas, but the quiet that happens after the celebrating is something that I also welcome. It’s a natural time for me to pause and think, to get out a notebook and scribble out plans and ideas for things I want to do just a little differently in the new year.
The word that came instantly to my mind was ‘Trust’. I wrote a few months ago about working hard to grow relationships and feeling discouraged when despite my best efforts there aren’t obvious signs of progress. I can’t fix things, it seems, no matter how hard I try. But thankfully I know who can. And that’s where my one word comes in. My worst moments unfailingly come when I forget to lean, forget that God knows best, forget that sometimes the answer is simply ‘wait’. I want to get better at trusting God to work in His time.
Trust helps at every stage of parenting, I think. Many things in parenting need to be done over and over and over. So many times I’ve felt like I was just spinning my wheels. Sometimes it was wondering if my baby would ever sleep through the night. Some of my toddlers had me wondering if I’d ever be done with diapers. There were older kids who didn’t seem to remember table manners no matter how many reminders I gave. Kids who couldn’t seem to put away shoes, ever. Teens who I fear will always be dour and monosyllabic.
Trust is hard when the forward motion isn’t perceptible. But so often progress comes in miniscule increments. Somehow, after years and years of night-waking and diaper changing, I’ve arrived at a stage where neither is part of my daily life. God, and time, can just as easily handle the current tough stuff in my life. So that’s what I’m working on this year. Trust. Especially when progress is hard to see.
Do you have a word to remember in this new year? What will it be?