I greet 2012 with much joy and relief. Not because I'm happy to see 2011 go - it was the most memorable year of my life thus far. It's because I view this New Year not as a beginning but as a half way point. Not as new but as the second stretch, the second semester. Because of D's last year in his engineering undergrad, we are still living the semester life. This semester life has also been referred to as our "parentheses time" by Landon [our wonderful officiant, pastor, marriage counselor, and friend].
Thus far, this little parentheses time has been crammed with lessons in life and completely new experiences and more realizations of our desperate need for grace. And, of course, I believe this half way point was chosen by the Lord on His flawless time line. It is a time to assess and to reflect. It is a time to celebrate this mile marker. The Lord is faithful to make our parentheses time sweeter and sweeter as He teaches and reminds us of our ability to live a life of godliness through life in Him. His lessons are nothing but evidence of His grace. It is with deep certainty that I can tell you that He's taught us how to love deeper. How to make the most of our limited time together. And how to be content and secure in any situation. Mastered these things we have not, but we're glad His love and patience are sturdy enough to teach us again and again.
His mercy is unmistakable as well. It's unmistakable when we don't honor our God with all 24 hours of our day. Or half. Or any of it. And it's unmistakable when we haven't been the wife or husband or sibling or friend or child or employee we're called to be.
I will remember 2011 as an incredibly exciting year. There were lots of dancing-in-the-living-room-out-of-excitement moments. It was a year filled with my favorite things - things worth celebrating. And celebrating BIG. There were so many weddings. So many accomplishments. And with them they brought many changes. Changes that were sweet and sometimes bitter but always good because the One's whose hand controlled them is good.
I'm thankful for the assurance that the Lord will continue to carry us through 2012 where we expect many more reasons to celebrate and many more reasons to dance. Happy New Year, y'all.