2017: The Year in Review

 Photo by Trey Hicks

Photo by Trey Hicks

We made it. It's almost 2018, and I really cannot wait. Honestly, though, the Lord knew exactly what he was doing in 2017, but it was still a year of tremendous emotional ups and downs. I feel it's a year I'll never forget (though I might try from time to time!), for it's a year that brought so many new understandings of life and how to let the Lord lead through it all. 

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men!
— Colossians 3:23

That being said, here are 17 reflections, thoughts, and lessons that I want to share with you. As you anticipate the new year, take time to remember this past one and all it brought. 

  1. God is in control. We can have a plan, but ultimately that plan should be surrendered to Him. 
  2. Don’t be afraid to take risks, just manage them as much as possible.
  3. Tell the one you love that you love her. 
  4. Make amends with old squabbles, especially if they’re within your family unit. 
  5. Take care of yourself mentally and emotionally; go to counseling and don’t be ashamed. 
  6. Friendships are stronger when you open up in a truly vulnerable way. 
  7. Pursue your passion projects, step by step. Give yourself space to fail the first time (or the first few times!). 
  8. Go to things alone. Meet people along the way, and learn their stories.
  9. Budget and steward finances well. You never know when a little surprise might turn into a four month hiccup. 
  10. Take a Saturday and write postcards to your friends, just a “thinking of you” type thing. 
  11. Serve for the sake of serving and not to be noticed or recognized. 
  12. Learn how to ask for help. Don’t try to do life alone. 
  13. Work hard but don’t worry too much about the next steps—that’s where trusting God comes into play. 
  14. Embrace the things that make you unique/weird, but don’t compare your uniqueness to another’s. 
  15. Go over to a friend’s house with no agenda other than to watch a movie, drink coffee, and/or talk. 
  16. Be kind to yourself. Don’t get upset if your year-long goals aren’t fully accomplished. 
  17. Take time to unplug. It’s not productive in the long run to be a brazen workhorse in the short term.