Having my birthday and wedding anniversary overseas without my husband and close friends was something I didn't really think too much about when I signed up to go to Germany. But actually it actually wasn't that bad - I mean, it's not every day you get birthday cake for breakfast with a cherry smiling right at you!
My birthday fell on a Sunday and it was a glorious day; taking public transportation (I know it sounds weird, but I LOVE and miss that), singing at church, and seeing the beautiful sites of Potsdam by bike!
The (bike) gang
During the ride my friend Bobby asked me what my goals for year 33 were; at that point I was dehydrated and hyper-focused on not falling off my bike - so I don't think I said anything. Thankfully I survived the ride and nearly a month later, having had a lot more time to pray and think, I'm finally able to articulate what I hope this year will look like.
I can clearly remember what my three "Cs" were last year: COMMUNITY, CALLING, and CHILDREN (still waiting, still in process for all). Funny - the older I'm getting the more intangible my "wishes" are becoming. Those from last year are still pretty tangible - there's visible evidence of it all over social media! (Which is partially why I chose to deactivate from Facebook, another story for another day).
But this year my "Cs" are looking a little different (BTW no rhyme or reason as to why the letter C seems to work for me), all related to the one word that keeps coming back to me - REST.
I'm generally not a restful person. I'm high energy, bouncy, adventurous, impatient, impulsive, and stubborn. But a couple months before my birthday, God began to reveal to me that I've been "doing" a whole lot out of my own power vs. just "being", and allowing His power to work in and through me.
Not that I plan on cutting back on any adventure time this year and by no means am I resolving to be some kind of calm zen person by the time I turn 34. God has affirmed that He in fact did intend for my personality to be how it is - but He has graciously made it clear that when I choose to unleash those personality traits out of my own power and to feed my own desires, things go quickly awry. But when I allow my Designer to use them how they were intended to be used, He can do some pretty awesome stuff.
I believe God is calling me - and perhaps you also - to rest in Him. So back to the Cs - year 33, I choose to rest in God, my:
Creator: The One who knew me before I was born, who purposed me for good works even before time began, who knew I'd be crazy and hard, and yet loves me anyway (and can use my passion for good!).
Comforter: The One who reminds me that His grace is enough for this temporary life - and my personal faults, fears, longings, hurts, and heartbreak...
Counselor: The One who wants to lead me through this life, to victory and to healing, in big and small decisions - because of Love.
I hope you're encouraged by this. If there's one thing I hope you've taken away, it's that you are purposed and loved completely as you are. I don't always remember that either, but it's the truth - so hang onto it.
This beautiful statue of Jesus Christ was at Friedenskirche, "Church of Peace", in Potsdam. It is a copy of the larger statue in Denmark which, on its base is written, "Kommer til mig" ("Come to me"), based on Matthew 11:28:
Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.
<3 amanda mae