In reflection of the past year, here are some of the highlights and lowlights.
- I moved in with Naomi, Brittney, and Katie. We had ups and downs and even fought a little, but I think we walked out of it with relationships that are stronger than they've ever been and friendships that will certainly last for the rest of our lives. I love these girls.
- I don't remember if anything significant happened in February.
- I began the journey of weight loss with my 100 pounds in one year plan. Although I stopped making an effort with the plan, I lost 40 pounds in 5 months and went through high stress periods and holidays without gaining a single pound.
- I passed all my classes.
- I watched many of my close friends and the people I've known for four year graduate from Bethel. Good job guys, you made it, God be with you.
- I started the most life changing experience I've ever been through, an internship with the church I attend. I learned a lot about youth ministry, but I learned more about the Kingdom of God, and I know that my life mission revolves around helping others to see and be a part of the Kindgom.
- I attended a CIY event as a leader and had the opportunity to grow close to several of the girls in the youth group. We started an accountability group that is still going.
- I had an opportunity to lead a small group geared toward helping young women to see themselves the way God does. I honestly don't know how much of a long term impact it made, but I learned a lot about the girls and I know our relationships are stronger for it.
- My internship ended. I wish it would have ended differently than it did.
- I returned to Bethel despite having doubts about whether I should return.
- I lost a friend.
- Spiritual Emphasis week happened. The speaker, John Vermilya, reiterated everything, and I mean everything I have learned this summer about living in God's Kingdom.
- I met my roommate, Neisha. I love this girl. I think she is fantastic.
- I spent a weekend on a camping trip with the house church I attend while in school. Went for a 4 or 5 mile hike, made it, felt good. Grew closer to those in the group.
- My room at Bethel flooded, mildewed, took maintenance 5 weeks to do anything about it, started developing headaches.
- Went home for Fall Break early due to migraine headaches.
- While at home during Fall Break, my cousin Erica had a seizure and went into ICU.
- Erica was taken off of Life Support and died. I came home a week after returning to Bethel to go to the funeral.
- On the way to the funeral, Erica's sister Megan got into a car accident.
- A financial mishap came back to bite me in the butt.
- I went into the emergency room for severe abdominal pain. Made the hospitale staff laugh a bit, got a job offer, and completely baffled the doctors as to what was wrong with me.
- Finally dropped out of school, came home, and started a job hunt.
- Had to turn down my top two choices for a job because they were too far away with me not having my own vehicle.
- Spent Thanksgiving taking time to get to know some of my dad's side of the family.
- Rejoined the Bridge Builders Group.
- Been struggling a bit with where it is that God wants me. I didn't fit at Bethel, and I feel like I don't quite fit here either.
- Said goodbye to my friend Naomi and she got the awesome opportunity to teach English in Korea!
- Spent Christmas getting to know my family on my dad's side a bit more.
- My grandma Linda went into the hospital, details are fuzzy right now.
- I'm still struggling a bit with life and all, but really experiencing God's providence in the midst of it all.
All in all, as the year comes to a close we realize that we will never see 2008 again, but the memories we've made will stay with us forever.
As I was growing up I stayed out of trouble by learning from mistakes others have made. Now that I'm older I'm finding that I am starting to learn from my own mistakes and that is driving me crazy.
Inspite of the lowlites of the year, I can't say that it was a bad year, nor can I say it was a good year because of the highlights. It was life and life happens and I'm blessed to be a part of it knowing that in all things I have the power to be content with what God has given me and where he has placed me.
The year 2008 is supposed to be a new beginning but that doesn't mean that the past is irrelevant. But I can enter the new year a little wiser, and with the knowledge that when the trials come, God does not abandon us, but will carry us through it holding us close, if we will let Him.
I've made no resolutions for the new year, and I am uncertain what the future holds, but I know that as 2008 closes and 2009 approaches, the one constant in my life has been God, and I will cling to him through it all.