One Word For 2012: Transformed – Part 2
At the beginning of the year, I selected a word to represent my year. The word I chose as part of the One Word 365 Community was transformed. Back in that post, I stated, “I want my life to be transformed by my relationship with God.” I also explained that I expected transformation or growth in other areas of my life as well.
As I reflect on the past year, it’s interesting to see how I experienced transformation. Yesterday, I posted highlights from the first half of 2012. Here are some of the highlights from the second half of 2012:
At the end of June, I gave up caffeine. After five months of nearly constant migraine headaches (Migraine Madness from February through June), one of my doctors suggested giving up caffeine. After depending on it for so long as part of my morning ritual, I wasn’t sure how that would go over. But I tried it anyhow. To my amazement, the frequency of my migraines significantly decreased. Since June, I’ve only had a few migraines compared to the countless migraines I had experienced up until that point. Believe it or not, giving up caffeine was transformational for me this year.
In July, I found myself on the launch team for a new book by Jeff Goins. Jeff’s book, Wrecked, was about what happens when a broken world slams into your comfortable life. Being part of the launch team was a huge learning experience as I consider the possibility of one day writing and launching my own book. And the book came at a perfect time as I prepared for my trip to Guatemala. Wrecked helped to transform my mind as I prepared for my own wrecked experience.
At the end of July into August, I traveled to Guatemala with the high school youth group from our church. I learned so many things through this experience. And I posted so many thoughts and emotions as I processed this trip and as I returned to my realities at home. I was reminded by this trip that I Am A Missionary. And I was reassured that Community Can Change The World. Since returning home on August 3rd, my heart still beats for the people of Xenacoj. When I hear news of volcanoes and earthquakes in the country of Guatemala, my ears perk up. I want to know how our friends are doing. And I long to return to the town that is permanently etched on my heart. With that in mind, my family is planning a return visit to Xenacoj, Guatemala this coming summer. Details are still coming together, but I would covet your prayers and potentially your support as we pursue further transformation and STRETCHING in Xenacoj.
September brought further transformation to my life as I saw my oldest child start high school. I’m not sure how that happened so fast, but I’m thankful for the transition Hannah has made. She has taught us many things and allowed us to experience many new adventures through her advancement to this level. In particular, her involvement with the cross-country team and the high school youth group have been transformational in my life. Her cross-country experience renewed my love for running. After a challenging year with migraines and general busyness, my running consistency had dropped off significantly. Seeing Hannah run and enjoy the experience reminded me of the importance of running in my own life. I’m not sure what the new year brings, but I’m going in with several weeks of consistency and an excitement for what is ahead. The high school youth group (RIOT) is also a place where I’ve experienced transformation this year. Since returning from Guatemala, I’ve missed very few Sunday nights of RIOT. These students continue to STRETCH me. Youth ministry has provided an opportunity for me to Pay It Forward.
In late October, I experienced a transformational week when my family helped to clean out a woman’s home in our area. The woman would be considered a hoarder, and cleaning out her home was no small task. Working at her home four out of seven days including the first and last day gave me a much clearer picture of what transformation looks like. We started with a house that was literally filled with stuff – two to four feet high across the entire floor – and a woman who was obviously broken. At the end of the week, we had the entire main floor clean, we put a significant dent in her front yard which had been unkept for years, and we began to see a new person emerging. Now, this woman has become part of our H.O.P.E. group that meets twice a month. She has a new excitement for living, and she’s even been inviting people into her home for coffee. While this week was clearly life changing for this woman, it was also transformational for every person who stepped foot in and around her home that week. Through this week of Servefest, I was reminded to Store Up Things That Matter.
November and December have brought smaller transformational experiences for which I am thankful. And as we head into the last two weeks of the year, I am aware of continued opportunities to be transformed. TRANSFORMED was a good word for this year. I don’t know what 2013 brings, but I’m sure transformation will continue.
How have you been transformed by 2012? Did you have a word for 2012? If you had to choose a word for 2013, what would it be? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment. Thanks!