More reflections on favorite books from 2013 to come. For now...Happy 2014!
Someone/something you’re especially grateful for: God’s love, and the sustaining prayers and caring of friends.
A special moment that stands out in your mind: Relaxing at the beach in Lake Erie with my husband and daughter.
A challenge or difficulty you faced: Helping someone I love go through something challenging and hard. Financial stress.
Something you learned as you navigated the above: To lean deeper and trust God for the strength I need.
A news moment that you recall with clarity: The death of Nelson Mandela.
Something or someone you missed: I miss my extended family (far-flung over geographic distance).
Something you feel nostalgic for: Respect for leaders and more civil conversations about issues of public concern.
A book you read and enjoyed: Listening for Madeleine by Leonard S. Marcus. The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle.
A movie you enjoyed watching: Les Mis. Also Star Trek: Into Darkness.
A song you enjoyed listening to: Speak, O Lord by Keith and Kristyn Getty.
Also Wild Child by Enya. (My eleven year old went crazy for Enya this year, and this song felt like the soundtrack to a lot of our days!)
An encouraging or inspiring quote you thought about: "After each failure, ask forgiveness, pick yourself up, and try again. Very often what God first helps us towards is not the virtue itself but just this power of always trying again." (~ C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity)
And from Galatians 5:22-23 (the Message):
"But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely."
Something you did that was new or surprising: Got past chapter 3 in the novel I’m writing. Earned more income from writing than teaching.
Something you wish you had more of in your life: Patience. And writing time.
Something you wish you had less of in your life: Worry.
A word or phrase that captures something about your year: “My work…is mostly standing still and learning to be astonished” (Mary Oliver)