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Happy New Year all!  I am literally so excited for this upcoming year; new beginnings, new opportunities and new blessings all waiting to come alive in the next twelve months.  And I am so stoked to finally start blogging again! I have taken a break for quite awhile; with crazy schedules and even crazier opportunities that came my way, blogging was unfortunately put on the back burner.  But I’m back….and so excited to share what the Lord has been teaching me.  It’s a crazy amazing journey, I hope you’ll come along!

Last week my twitter, Facebook and email accounts were flooded with New Year’s blog posts, news articles and chain emails on “how to make this year count, how to make resolutions last, how to make 2013 the best year ever”…etc, etc, etc. {anyone find the same flood in their news feeds?}  I love these posts; there is something inspiring about the new year, it’s like your slate is wiped clean and you can start fresh to make this year really count.  But then I started thinking about a month or two from now, when resolutions start to fade and slowly one by one they bite the dust.  I suddenly felt this overwhelming sadness for those lost dreams, those dead goals and unfulfilled desires.  All lost in a matter of a slow fade of two months time.

244390717250771932_PS9PpIvm_cBut why do these dreams fade?  Why do the goals end up being more of a burden than a blessing? Why do resolutions lose their shine just days after they are made? I think it all comes down to our reward.  We stop exercising because we don’t see our jeans fitting better.  We stop reading the bible every morning because we stop hearing God speak.  We stop attempting to fix our relationships because they aren’t getting any better.  The list goes on. I have certainly caught myself doing this, whether it was dieting or working on a relationship, I’ve found myself giving up because I didn’t see immediate results.  

I think about these fading resolutions and then I think about the last year of my life.  Gosh I can’t even put into words how crazy amazing 2012 was.  It was full of transition, unfolding opportunities and leaps of faith.  And then I think about how every blessing and every amazing reward that came throughout the year {and on into this year} were all dependent upon my obedience at the beginning of the year.  I reflect on my process of surrender, and how the final act of opening my hands to God would release a flood of rewards.

Being a solid year from that moment of impact, I see a more grand perspective on obedience, pressing in and pressing forward.  I can see how there were immediate blessings from my leap of faith, but I also see how that leap was simply a tiny step to releasing even greater blessings to come. 

Something we can all glean from my journey last year is that I had to keep pressing on in my faith after my initial leap.  While my first step started in January, I still had to continue to press into my Savior and dig deeper into his promises that he has for me all throughout the year.  If I had walked right back into my “old” life in the summer then I would never receive the intended blessing that was supposed to come in the winter!  There were blessings that I wouldn’t receive until the fall that were utterly reliant upon my obedience in January, but I had to continue to walk in faith, pressing forward through Jesus in order to walk the path of blessing that would lead me to greater rewards.

God longs for us to expect big things from life and from Him.  He literally aches for us to not just live a life, 412220172112285324_VyRvD1RG_cbut to live an abundantly awesome life!  But that abundant life takes perseverance.  It takes an initial leap of faith; but then the greater rewards unfold as time passes and we embrace Jesus more closely.   It takes wading through the dry seasons and inching forward in the slow seasons.  Every goal, every act of obedience and every resolution pressed into will yield rewards; but it’s in God’s hands when that reward comes to fruition.  Let’s be real: sometimes our hard work, disciplined days and obedient hearts don’t give us the immediate results we were looking for; sometimes they leave us dry for days or even months.  But that diligence and forward movement will be blessed, now or later.  We must keep our eyes on the grander prize; the blessings that are to come.

This year we can’t let our goals, dreams, prayers, resolutions fade from lack of results; we must keep pressing into thepromises of our Savior.  He has promised us an abundant life filled with his extraordinary favor.  But to experience everything he has prepared for us, we have to continue to move through the dry times and draw into our Savior.  There are many times when fulfilling our goals or acting in obedience is just plain not fun, there are times when the process won’t be glamorous, easy or filled with the same lively spirit that we had in the beginning.  But it’s in those times when we must press on the most; when we know beyond a shadow of a doubt that there is something utterly amazing up head.  

Don’t let 2013 be cut short of all that God intends for it to be.  You are making choices today that will impact the blessing you receive later.  The choices you make today set you up for a beautiful reward to come.  Press into the One who orchestrates our time, and press on to stay on the path that leads to the beautiful rewards.  Hold on to the One who is faithful, keep your eyes fixed on the blessing that is to come.  God is faithful to his promises,  He won’t let you down. 

So what about you all? What are your goals, dreams, prayers, resolutions for 2013?  I’d love to hear what you are believing God for this year!

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