Thursday, March 2, 2023

New Tricks are Getting Trickier

In January I declared my word for 2023 to be "goodness," and so far this year, I have had many opportunities to be made aware of how God's blessings abound. 

While many people consider February to be their least favorite month, I've always been a bit partial to it, not least because it's when my birthday occurs. While some folks might not look forward to another birthday, I'm long past that nonsense. These days I view birthdays as opportunities to celebrate another year of living--an opportunity not granted to all.

Some of the "goodness" I celebrated in February 2023:

An opportunity to gather with family. My sister, brother, and I are scattered across the U.S., but in February we managed to gather in San Antonio for a fun reunion. And it just happened to fall on my birthday! 

Celebrating my birthday with friends. When I joined an exercise class eight years ago, I had no idea what a blessing these ladies would become.

Celebrating Sydney's graduation. Residents who complete the program at Exodus House are such an inspiration!

Birthday greetings from friends, valentine roses from my husband, and a beautiful valentine and little birdhouse from my sweet next-door neighbor, Eva. 

Daffodils blooming by my front porch. They remind me that spring is just around the corner!

My 2023 birthday picture

Remember when we were kids and each year had a birthday picture made? Well, I began my seventh decade by posting a "birthday picture" of me doing a tricky yoga pose--tricky for me that is. God's goodness has allowed me to remain healthy over the past three years and continue with my exercising. However, I must admit those tricks are getting . . . well, trickier. While this pose may not look complicated, I promise it presents a challenge to 73-year-old knees. That might or might not be a grimace rather than a smile on my face. 😝

Sunday, January 22, 2023

Looking Backward for Inspiration to Go Forward

Last year I shifted from my usual New Year’s tradition of choosing a word to choosing hymns or songs to focus on in the upcoming year. This year I’m returning to selecting a word. And just as the month of January serves as a connection between the past and the future, I chose a word from a song I discovered last year to inspire and sustain me throughout 2023. 

The song The Goodness of God was released in 2019, but I first heard it in the fall of 2022. I love its lyrics and melody. I often find myself humming it at those moments when I’m “surprised by joy”—those moments when something as simple as a cardinal alighting on my bird feeder 

or as spectacular as the sun setting in the Oklahoma sky fills me with delight and awe. 

The song also comes to me at more somber times when I’m feeling frustrated or overwhelmed, reminding me that God is ever faithful and I have much to be thankful for.

And so the word I’ve chosen for 2023 is goodness. In times of happiness, contentment, or smooth-sailing as well as times of trial, disappointment, or bumpy seas, I want a word that challenges me to look for God’s endless, matchless, never-failing goodness in the midst of all situations. Want to join me in this delightful endeavor?

There are many renditions of The Goodness of God. I hope you enjoy this one performed by CeCe Winans.