Anyway, one thing that really stood out in his sermon was the importance of recording the events where God has impacted you. It might be one of those amazing God moments that, as someone pointed out to me (sorry - can't remember the who or the where), happen all the time, yet we are so self-absorbed neediness that we miss it entirely, or it me be a moment of reflection when we realize how different we are from a younger version of ourselves.
As I sit here this afternoon, I can't help but think of how everything I have and everything I am is all because of God's amazing grace. Yes, it may sound cheesy to some, but I am so ok with cheesy because, when I am out of my own self-absorbed fleshly self long enough to look around, I see how easy bein' cheesy is. Where money, homes, status and power, and ego preservation were the most important things in my world before Jesus entered, I am now content with no money, a beat up home (although God does see fit for me to own it at this time), no status (I am a single, broke, teacher in podunk, Kentucky for goodness sake), and a very real understanding that my ego needs to be replaced with humility so God can work through me.
What an incredible transformation - one I can't explain, one I don't deserve, one I praise God for. Anytime I fall back into my whiny "what about me?" world, I hope I look back on this post and remember how God has changed me, focused my attention on others more than myself.
Things I did in 2011 I would never have done prior to God:
- Ate Top Ramen and was thankful for it.
- Got my finances in order even though it required letting go enabling someone else (a trait I see in myself now)
- Prayed to God when things were confusing or frustrating; whenever I let go, I actually saw amazing miracles, such as getting additional work to help me pay debts down, found ways to cut bills so that I wasn't paying so much out. Those ideas had been there all along, but my mind couldn't see them until I let God take it all.
- Listened to the times God told me to act (like this summer when I had to question a decision made by my boss), and God saw me through each stage.
- God gave us an amazing principal to see us through a very challenging change at the school.
- I saw the simple pleasures of growing a garden from a brand new perspective and enjoyed the simple task of breaking beans on the front porch! How country girl is that!
- I had an amazing Christmas break where I reconnected with God on a closer level and recharged my batteries in preparation for the 2nd half of the school year.
- I finished portfolio entry #4 (except for the two page reflection) and sent it for yet another perusal by my mentor.
- I have a plan for portfolio entries #2 and #3 (well, sort of) and trust that God will help me see this national board certification through.
- I helped serve Thanksgiving dinner at the community center this year, something I would never have thought to have done years ago. This was such an amazing day that I hope to keep with me always.