New Year, New Fear

encouragement, New Year / Friday, December 28th, 2018

2019 is knocking at the door. I bought my new planner yesterday, usually an act that brings a lot of excitement. At the tail end of 2018 though, I don’t know how to feel about a new year and the crisp pages of a new planner. For a few years during the last days of December, I have always downloaded Jennie Allen’s Dream Guide, and used it as a tool to set goals for the upcoming year. I have downloaded it for this year, but can’t seem to muster up any desire to sit down and dream about 2019. I recently heard about Power Sheets, another planner of sorts geared toward helping you cultivate an intentional life. Neil gave me the 2019 Power Sheets planner for Christmas, a separate planner just for goal setting, but it is as though the cover of it is glued shut. I am usually the first one in line for goal setting and I am all about reflecting on the past year, and dreaming about the one to come. Except this year. I feel entirely different about 2019. Honestly, I don’t know what to think about 2019, I just know that I am afraid of it. Literally I am terrified of what will fill those tiny squares over the course of this next year. I think I am most afraid that I will close out 2019, like I am closing out 2018, with a deep sadness.

When I started my blog at the beginning of this year, my very first post was about the excitement I held for 2018. In fact, I referred to my new 2018 planner as a “tall glass of water”. I was so excited and so expectant for all that was to come this year. Surely a new season was around the corner. My heart sunk as I read that post, 2018 has been far from a tall glass of water, in fact it is been a year that has run me dry. 2018 was an extremely hard year. I entered the year weary from what a felt like an already long season, little did I know that season would only be prolonged, and we would wade through deeper waters. Our two miscarriages that happened back to back rocked me deep to my core, and would have made for a tough year regardless, but I can’t help but think the high expectations I had for 2018, make sitting here in the dwindling days of December a bit harder.

Recently I read an article talking about the difference a year can make. This post was an encouraging one, talking about how time takes care of many things, and how much things can change for the better over the course of a year. All true statements. In some cases. As I read those words though, I felt sad. Sad because things didn’t actually get better for me over the course of this year, they days got harder and my tears fall more frequently.

So I sit here with my new planner, and the tension of how to handle 2019. On one hand I want to assume nothing and prepare for the worst, terrified of more pain. And on the other, I want to expect change, and believe the best about the year ahead. Presume upon a victory. Those two ends of the spectrum seem so confusingly far from each other that it has left me in limbo. The Dream Guide is untouched, the planner unused.

My only solution is to pray. To invite God into my heart. To ask Him to heal the wounds from 2018, and to breath hope into me for the year ahead. I know He doesn’t want me to fear the future, but I also don’t want to be so fixated on an outcome or my circumstances changing that I miss what He wants to do in me and through me in 2019. 2018 has taught me to hold my plans and my days with loose hands. I truly feel like 2019 is a blank slate, fearing the worst, hoping for the best, and I am just standing here on the precipice of it all, knowing that God is with me, no matter what comes.

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