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Lessons learned last year - Happy New Year!!!

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

I have entered 2017 with a clear head and a calm heart. 

2016 was the year of high highs and low lows for me. I experienced God in an unreal way in 2016! As I reflect on last year, I realize that every single month has truly been LIT! Even in the midst of heartache God still blew my mind in these last twelve months. 

2016 taught me the importance of many things!!! I figured I would share my top lessons learned this year. Let's go!!

 Plain and simple! One thing I know for sure is with every blessing there is a lesson.  I had to learn not to get so stuck praising the blessing and I would miss the lessons from the Father!  I appreciate those lessons because they keep you humble and a humble heart makes God smile. Every blessing that I experienced last year came paired with an awesome and amazing challenge disguised as a lesson. I learned and am still learning how to appreciate those lessons and challenges. I was not eager to see them coming but I was thankful afterward for them.

New level = New Lesson

This lesson is one I'm truly learning like right now in real time. My pattern is to typically go until I crash! This method just honestly does not benefit anyone. Working full time, participating in ministry, and blogging can sometimes get overwhelming. I realized that my new normal was constant movement and lots of thinking. If I'm home, I'm reading or studying spiritual literature and the Bible, when I'm at work I have to focus and pay very close attention to detail, when I'm blogging I am very vulnerable and open and that sometimes can be draining.  At 32 years old, I'm learning the importance of scheduling self-care. I am learning to sit and feel God's peace. I am learning to schedule more rest. I am learning to not feel guilty for resting more.  Crashing and burning is not the way to life and I vow to do better!

As I said above this year has been full of high highs and low lows. I've blogged about many of those moments right here on TotallyTot.com.  Some may wonder why I would blog and share such vulnerable moments. Well, I have truly learned the power of being transparent. Being transparent doesn't mean that everyone should know everything happening in your life. It simply means that you can dig deeper and be open and honest about where you are emotionally, spiritually, and even physically. I've never had a true problem in being transparent but in 2016 I learned how powerful it is. Being transparent helps you to see that you are NEVER alone, it is empowering and honestly, it takes the sting away from the struggles in life. My transparency has put me in the position to share my faith more and more and that's what this entire journey is all about. No matter who side-eyed me for sharing personal things, God let me go through it so I could share how HE brought me through it! 

A lot of my 2016 was spent praying and growing spiritually. I opted out of the hustle and grind of running a blog and opted in to keeping a lot of my focus on my spiritual growth. My 2016 life was filled with a lot of praying, working my full-time job, and blogging. I did not make "networking" a priority. I chose church events over networking events many a days last year.  lol! I did not stress meeting people, being seen and on the scene, I simply just focused on my spiritual growth. This approach opened doors I could have never imagined. The more I made my relationship with a God a priority, the more God released blessings in a very real way.  Choosing to position myself with a humble heart before God has proven to be a very wise choice.

Friends!!! How many of us have them?
One major lesson I learned in 2016 is the importance of having a circle you can depend on. My friends have supported me immensely in 2016.  I was forced to accept that I could not do this life journey alone. God had to soften my heart and teach me how to value the people around me. These divine connections have encouraged me during some of my lowest moments. I am thankful for my squad. I can honestly say because of them I have felt loved and supported during every high and low experienced last year. After years of ups and downs in my friendships, I finally am starting to get it: I CAN NOT DO THIS JOURNEY ALONE. 

My final lesson that I learned in 2016 is through it all I am still winning!!! Not because I am so amazing but because of GOD’S GRACE! I thank God for never leaving me or forsaking me. I thank God for loving me in spite of me. No matter how tough life gets, WE ARE ALL WINNERS WITH JESUS!

 I'm extremely thankful for what has been and hopeful for what will be. Positive thinking says I can do it, but Kingdom thinking says Jesus already did it!  Some people say "stay woke" I instead encourage you to stay connected!  #GodIsThePlug

May your 2017 be overflowed with love, lessons, and blessings!

Peace & Love

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