dearest friends and family: a holiday letter 2013

Dearest Friends and Family,

What a whirlwind year 2013 has been! It’s been a season full of growth and each moment, especially those that have been the most trying, have added to the adventure that is my life. Thanks be to my God for all of it!

Minneapolis is great, as usual. I’ve grown quite accustomed to calling downtown my home and thesample_2.2 sounds of city are almost like a lullaby to me. I’ve learned quite a bit about this city in the last year and have found a few places that I’ve dubbed “mine” where God and I hash through my questions on life, who I am and His love for me.

I’m still at [insert place of business] and enjoy my job immensely even with the operating and phone system changes we’ve experienced this year. Nothing stays the same in this fast-paced, constantly-evolving world and embracing change makes things that much easier. Then again, I guess I’ve always been one to pursue things that make me grow. After all, aren’t we all a work in progress? And what is progress without change?

In September, I became an independent PartyLite consultant and have enjoyed sharing the company product and decorating ideas with clients and friends. Plus, I get to do what I love doing when I’m not at my day job: candles, decorating and party! Well…in the clean sense, of course. *Smile* That part time job also gives me the space to have a life and continue to serve my church.

Speaking of church, The Vine has also seen some growth and community has begun to come alive. We continue to get to know one another and are learning what it means to hold each other accountable and are discovering what true community looks like. Please continue to pray that God would move according to His will, that those who are coming with continue to grow in their faith, that we continue to build deeper relationships within our church, and for the hearts of those God brings through those doors and into our individual lives.

All in all, some things are the same, but I’m different.

I tried some new things year and each trial has forced me to take a long, hard look at who I am and who I’m becoming; who God created me to be. I’ve built new relationships and deepened old ones. I’ve discovered what it means to disciple and be discipled. I’m learning new ways of reaching out to others and discovering passions I didn’t know I had. I’ve been writing more and even made an attempt at finishing a novel. It’s still a work in progress. And my relationship with Jesus has also grown deeper.

I’ve learned plenty and I’m still soaking up all of the details.

This Christmas, I found myself contemplating the gift He so freely gave: Himself. For us.

He came.

He lived.

He died for all.

He loved.

He set the standard based upon the will of God. And while that type of sacrificial love is beyond our understanding, we can learn from His example and follow Him.

We have that choice.

I pray that with this next year, you’ll discover and come to believe deep down in your heart just how loved you are.

Choose joy. Choose to love radically.

Be blessed,

Me

Photo: © NBdesigns

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