Friday, January 1, 2010

Welcome, 2010!!

In my 27 years of life, I've never spent a New Year's Eve alone. There's always parties, gatherings, sparkling grape juice, loud groups of people, crazy games and ALOT of smiles/yelling/general rejoicing... And don't get me wrong---generally I like that. :) This year, I decided to be different. Instead of jumping-up-and-down-and-screaming the New Year's welcome, I was calm. Quiet. Contemplative.

First, I headed out to the freezing cold outdoors of downtown State College to experience "First Night." And it definitely was FREEZING cold. Maybe my frozen toes was related to the fact that I ran out of the house in a rush that morning.. not realizing there was a couple inches of fresh snow on the ground. Fluffy, pretty, cold, wet snow. And I was wearing dressy ballet flats. Without socks. Stupid, I know.... But the pain goes away after toes go numb. So I wandered up and down this street for awhile.

Looking at ice sculptures. (I like ice sculptures. They remind me of my childhood. I have a vivid memory of seeing my first ice sculpture---a huge seashell filled with cold cocktail shrimp. Yummy!! hahaha)

I guess that everyone else was cold, too. Funny-winter-hat business was booming!

Some ice sculpure artists were still working...

Eventually, I unfroze.. took a last look.. and headed home for a quiet evening.

New Year's Eve is a symbolic time... I've never been a fan of New Year's resolutions. They always tend towards the shallow and the impossible (i.e. I want to lose 40 pounds in a week!). Honestly.... that's just crazy-talk! But I do make New Year's goals. Sometimes it's encouraging to look back and feel a sense of accomplishment. Sometimes it's a little painful to see where I fell short of those goals. But New Year's is about new beginnings, right?
This year, my goals are simple. I want to love... Love Jesus more, love people more... Learn to genuinely show love.... Sure, there are more specific goals. But I like to go to the heart of the matter... and LOVE is where it all begins.

The year of 2010 stretches out in front of me like a long, dusty road. Many unexpected twists and turns. And yet---I don't fear the future; I rejoice in it. I don't shudder at the unknown; I anticipate it. Life is continually changing, always unpredictable, always bringing a new season to be mastered and conquered..

"She looks at the future and smiles..." Proverbs 31:25

I look at 2010 and smile. Welcome. :)

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