Pastoral Ponderings – January 2022

Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.”  ~ Philippians 4:9

The year of our Lord, 2022, is quite literally, right around the corner—only 11 days from the day I write this! With each year comes new life lessons for us to learn. I read somewhere that if we don’t learn our lesson the first time through an experience, then we will continue to have similar experiences until we learn that lesson. Whether or not that is actually a truth, I feel very much like it is, especially over the last two years.

As we celebrate the birth of Baby Jesus this week, and prepare to welcome in yet another new year, I would invite you to take a couple of moments and look over the last year of your life. Taking time to really understand yourself and your relationship with God and with God’s creation, is important for you to move forward in God’s plan for you.

Find a quiet place, with no distractions, even if for 10 minutes. Get yourself comfortable, maybe grab a cup of your favorite beverage, and allow yourself to just be. Breathe in the hope and love of this Christmas season, and breathe out all your could haves / should haves / would haves of the past year. Allow these to float away from you, taking any regret with them.

After a few breaths, take a couple of minutes for each of the following questions:

  1. What life lesson have I learned this past year?
  2. How has this lesson changed my life? Have I actually allowed it to make the change it is supposed to?
  3. How has this lesson changed my relationships with those I love, as well as with those I find difficult being in relationship with?
  4. Is there a lesson that I didn’t learn, but feel like the opportunities to learn it keep popping up in my life?
  5. How can I pay more attention to those lessons I choose not to learn, or have trouble understanding I need to learn?

When you finish, breathe in the hope of this new year, and breathe out everything of which you want to let go. Breathe in. Breathe out. Make room for the opportunities for whatever lessons are coming your way.

What lessons do you need to learn? What lesson do you think God needs you to learn? What lessons do you think God needs us to learn as a whole? Will you resolve to be open to those lessons?

May you have a Wonder-filled Christmas, and an abundant New Year!

~ Always Peace,  Pastor Heidi