Wednesday, November 4, 2015

the one with all the resolutions

To my Friends friends --

One of the best episodes. Am I right? I mean, do you realize how many classic Friends references come from this one episode? Phoebe trying to teach Joey to play the guitar. Ross getting stuck in the leather pants. Rachel desperately trying not to gossip... which eventually explodes in the legendary THEY DON'T KNOW THAT WE KNOW THEY KNOW WE KNOW! (Which comes up in my life more than any other Friends reference. Ever.) But my favorite resolution is Chandler's commitment to not make fun of his friends for the entire year--which is ridiculously impossible and the very reason why he is the best character on the show. No, really, he is.

I like New Year's resolutions. (I am aware that it's November.) Come January one, my social media will be split between all my "I-declare-this-new-year-to-be" friends and my "resolutions-are-for-the-birds" friends. I'm here to tell you that I'm on the pro-resolutions side of the fence. (But I still love all of you folks who want to call it something else or debunk it altogether.) I'm just a sucker for the idea of a fresh start and a new goal. And I don't care if some cheesy tradition is the root of it.
Shortly after we rang in 2015, I had one of those moments when I realized God had been putting something in front of my face a bajillion times and it was FOR A REASON. I kept hearing people in my church worlds refer to the resolution concept as something like, "In what areas of your life are you waiting for a breakthrough?" BREAKTHROUGH. I can't even recount the times this word came up during the first weeks of the year. Okay, God. Got it.

So I wrote down a few things. A few things that have bothered me for years. A few things that I have often resigned to living with for the rest of my life. A few things that can make me feel broken. A few things that can suffocate. A few things that I have never completely relinquished to God.

This is what I've learned:
  • "Breakthrough" does not come easily. The very word tells you that something will break. I don't really like to break. It's uncomfortable. 
  • When you ask God to change something, you have to allow it to happen on His terms. I'm a planner. I love to orchestrate how something comes to be. Not gonna happen here.
  • There will be interference. Let's call it what it is - when I ask God to work on something in me and plan to give Him the credit, the devil will try to destroy it. You can count on that.
When I began this post, I wanted to write about how I have truly seen breakthrough in these areas of my life. That was three weeks ago. Weeks. I wrote the first part and then needed to leave to get somewhere on time. (Or a few minutes late. Let's be real.) And I never came back to it.

Because my second "breakthrough" undid itself. WHAT. And I have been so frustrated. SO frustrated. And, to be honest, I let myself fall apart for a little bit. I fell into school stress and busyness and self-defeat. And it was easy to do because OCTOBER. I love October, but October is when the newness of the school routine has come and gone. Report cards, parent conferences, real things to grade, testing--and that's just my end of it. My Mady Jane is in the thick of it now, too, which means KEEPING UP WITH 1ST GRADE. (Don't get me wrong - she's a rockstar. I just hold on tight.) And the holiday season begins without you even knowing it. Costumes, parties, field trips, projects, birthdays. Yay. And I just lost it. It was so not pretty. And I apologize to those innocent bystanders who felt the effects of it. But I'm over it. I began this post to give glory to God for the changes in my life this year. And even through this hiccup, the year is not over and I'm refocusing to find the breakthrough. Don't be surprised if you hear me coaching myself over the next few weeks: Hold on. Shake through the distractions. Break   through.