I wonder what it is about an end of year that often activates my “self-evaluation mode” and uncannily spotlights unachieved goals …

Going back memory lane…

This morning I picked up my prayer journal and, for no apparent reason, flipped back to December 30th– 31st 2017 and January 1st, 2018. How time flies! I reminisced as I went through the entries from my 2017 end-of-year retreat.  It feels like yesterday when I’d inscribed, YESed, and AMENed all these promises. I’d been full of hope and expectations.

I stared long and hard at the blueprints on the white pages of my journal where, almost as though fulfillment depended on the beauty of my calligraphy, I had neatly engraved my divine promise and hashtag for the new year: “2018, My Year of New Beginnings”; “Behold, I am making ALL THINGS NEW.”  #AllThingzNew

I skimmed through the notes from the New Year Eve’s church service, or should I say services. In my context, spending the last night of the year in church is big Christian tradition. We call it “cross over night.” We delight in starting a new year in the house/presence of God.  Last year, I couldn’t make it to church on December 31st so I streamed the cross over night church services of Pastors Adeboye, Mensa Otabil and Dr Enenche … yes almost simultaneously😊. I “AMENed” and meticulously jotted down prophetic declarations like: this is my year of restoration, open doors, fulfilment, great possibilities, etc.

I also read through the January 1st 2018 sermon notes and lingered briefly on the Bible verse from which the sermon was drawn: 1 John 4:16a “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love.” Then I turned over to the next page of my journal where I had written down my goals for 2018. Scanning through, I recalled highlights like new ministry opportunities, financial and career breakthroughs, achieved goals and the several “God Things” I experienced through 2018. There’s no denying, God’s been too gracious!

I also recalled the lowlights – those moments when God threw me a curveball and I wrestled with His sovereignty. The death of a dearly loved one I’d desperately pleaded for God to heal; an unexpected news from a sister, the excruciating lonely paths I walked, stubborn health issues etc …

Overall though, I seem to be on track with my goals – growing spiritually and career wise; engaging new landmark investment projects. I ticked off these goals and smiled. Next on my list was emotional goals. Now, if you are thinking “Seriously? Who sets emotional goals?” Let me humbly submit that “I do” (oouuhh that almost sounded like a wedding vow lol). Emotional wise though! I scratched my head. Errr, nothing to write home about.  

My first emotional-wise goal for 2018 was complete recovery from an “almost experience” 😊(details in a subsequent post). Secondly, I’d written that “marriage would be a blessing, but not as I will.” I know it sounds ambiguous and casual. I guess I was trying to play safe – not to raise my hopes too high for fear of a hard dash; not to totally cast-off hope, which is of great reward. An expectation with a mental reservation? Okay, who’s fooling who?

I paused to ponder what I meant by “marriage would be a blessing.”  Before long, the blueprints blurred and faded as my mind went adrift, swifter than the Gulf Stream and further than I could resist – to December 2010, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, and 2016. Each of those years, I had written similar versions of the same goal regarding my emotional life: to queue into God’s perspective for my life regarding marriage, to meet my spouse, to get married, to settle down and have kids, to close this marriage chapter, etc., etc. I remembered the hopes I had nursed for each of those years which have all been repeatedly deferred.

2019 is almost here

My heart sank a little with the realization that yet another year is fading with this goal unchecked. There’s so much truth in Proverbs 13:12 – “hope deferred makes the heart sick.”  It’s like what an author (Annie F Downs) wittingly described as a  “mirage of the promised land that was actually just another lap in the desert.” 

Suddenly, a Pandora’s box of questions opened: Did I trust God enough? Fasted/prayed enough? Was I discerning enough? Or worse, AM I ENOUGH? What am I missing? God! Are you even listening?

No clapper,
no sound

I then vividly thought about the many wedding bells I’ve heard competing with the Christmas bells this season and slightly irked that my bell lacked a clapper to make similar sounds. Or wait, does it really have to? I quickly realised I was drifting to a place where none should tarry. Why are you downcast oh my soul? Hope in the Lord, again and again and again. At that moment, I had to be intentional about detaching my joy from any blessing or the lack thereof. To be joyful, not because of what is or promised. 

I know I must own my joy, but why don’t I always have a grasp on it like I want to? I still lack a roadmap for such momentary end-of-year mixed feelings and emotional dribbling. I still don’t always want to go home to my parents for the Christmas holidays, not just because I deeply enjoy quiet independence, but for a low-key apprehension for the dreaded question I wrote about in my first blog post (If you missed that, you can read it here). Also, I’m not exactly sure that I am always blessed by the all too familiar tempo of some December sermons. The likes of: “God can still do something [before the year runs out];” “trust God for an 11th hour miracle;” “don’t give up at injury time;” or “The God of the Suddenly.” No offense, but some sermon titles are, well…interesting. Being real here, not cynical –  I do believe; help my unbelief! 

So, yea, I confess that I did have one of those end-of-year pressure moments #NotImmune. I am learning to encourage myself in the Lord and to TRUST God’s Sovereignty. To remember that my life’s purpose is bigger than marriage and that there is surely a purpose to this “delayed” process; to be thankful for the gift of life and the hope for eternal life. But no, #IDontHaveItAllTogether. I am growing, gaining new perspectives and that, in itself, is HOPE. Life is a process, not an event. Sometimes “Behold I am doing a new thing” means “I am giving you a new perspective.” That, makes  #AllThingzNew – just as God had promised at the dawn of 2018. BEHOLD-LOOK-SEE-PERCEIVE #PERSPECTIVE. For now, I SEE that I can always rely on the love God has for me – a love so unconditional it never FADES no matter how many years go by. #SoHelpMeGod!

Got missed goals?

What about you? Have you ever had a brush of sadness about things that seem to tarry while years fade? Still waiting for the fulfilment of a divine promise? Feel free to leave a comment here below or share this post with anyone who might relate. Don’t forget to follow me if you’d like to be immediately notified of new posts.

Since my next post will be in January 2019, allow me to wish you a happy new year in advance. Celebrate!!! May HOPE renew strength to keep on keeping on. 

God Bless you.

The Christian Bachelorette

12 thoughts on “Another Year Fades …

  1. Written with such compelling honesty, this is a thought-provoking foray into the emotional vicissitudes that often accompany our sometimes uneasy wait on God for the fulfillment of our hopes in life. God is a God of seasons, He transcends the yearly milestones that humans pen on a calendar. It is always perfect within His will. I am encouraged by your charge of faithful optimism in the unimpeachable daringness of God to always keep His word. Delight in your achievements, and beam fully in the light you have brought upont the lives of multitudes whose own yearnings have found fulfillment in the Lord. I will always pray for you: not for you to be encouraged and be hopeful, but in thanksgiving to God for your earnest prayers already answered. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2019.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, sometimes God doing a new thing may actually rquire getting a new perspective.I am beginning to think being too anxious about certain things pushes them further away from me.So am learning to be joyful and at peace with myself and my present circumstances, as I wait on God but there is still that little voice that will not be stuff led.It is saying “Father please do it in 2019″LOL

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Yea, sometimes God doing a new thing may actually mean He is giving you a new perspective.I also do that self evaluation at the end of the year and it’s dawning on me that anxiety seems to push things from me.So am learning to be joyful and be at peace with myself and my circumstances though there is that stubborn voice still crying out from somewhere deep down and saying “Father let in come in 2019, January please”LoL.

    Like

  4. Just discovered I am not the only one who does end of year evaluation but people are beginning to evaluate my life too & telling me this or that is overdue…so instead of the usual down syndrome I am really asking God to give strength to face things & a really new perspective to the overdued ( in whose context anyway)promises. Help me Lord.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I laughed at the scratching of the head and smiled at some lines. I like the way you play with words, yet capturing your fears and holding on to hope. Behold, He makes all things new.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Emotional goals sounds new but quite inspiring! Never taken a second thought on that, but as I read your article I realized I have to be intentional on that even as a married person though.
    But I was pondering over the how a bachelorette will actually meet such goals when all does not depends on the goal setter???
    I have also been questioning myself on what year, and what time it is on God’s calendar!
    I came to the conclusion that all I really need is total reliance on him, making use of each opportunity that comes in the fear of the Lord.
    As for failed goals, I can’t count them cos I don’t even remember. Or should I say I chose not to.
    Thanks for your inspiring posts…
    I am on my way to set some emotional goals!!!

    Like

  7. I sometimes wonder how we would have gone about it if we had the ability to do something about it, but helas! No alternative as true Christianbachelorettes. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, even In these travails, acknowledge him and he shall direct their path…hmmmm
    Thank God for grace , only grace, yes, I believe it is sufficient

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s