New Year, New You

“There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.”

As we come into a new year, you may have already picked out the new habit you’d like to instill in yourself. New Year, new you…isn’t that the mantra that comes with the turning of the calendar page? Perhaps you’ve fallen to your go-to resolution, be it weight loss or dedicated Bible reading, and hope that just maybe it will stick this year. Maybe your aspiring new habit is more specific: fewer speeding tickets, one less soda or one more hug a day. Maybe you are aiming low and thinking about choosing something general: be healthy, unplug, or be a better person.

Would you allow me to share my thoughts, and perhaps give you a better resolution?

Last weekend, I spent a belated Christmas with my dad and step-mom, along with my brother. As we were wrapping up our evening, my brother stated that he was only a few years shy of turning thirty. I mentally took a step back and thought to myself “absolutely no way, my brother is not that close to thirty”. I then realized that yes, the time had gone so quickly that years had crept up on me and didn’t even realize it. I am 6 years from being thirty, and what am I doing with my life?

Sure, I have goals and I am extremely blessed with the life that God has given me, but am I truly living my life? I am going to college and learning many facts, but am I learning and experiencing life in a way that I won’t regret looking back on? What do I know of other cultures, people, and places? What experiences am I missing out on that I either don’t know about or I’m afraid to conquer?

Before you label me as a “crazed young whippersnapper”, and think that my quarter-life crises is nothing to worry about, let me share with you something that happened to me this week.

On Monday, I attended a funeral of a man who was a part of our church family at our previous church. He was quiet but had a very kind personality. He left behind a wife and three young children: for he was a young man himself. He had suffered a stroke a few months back, and on New Year’s Day, he passed away. When my husband told me the news, I paused and thought “but he was so young– and such a good person– has a family. It doesn’t make sense that he’s gone”.

After attending the funeral, and going through the “stages of grief”, I started to think of my own life, and if I’m living it as I should, or could be. This seems to be the expected response to this type of event, but I believe it is an important one. His funeral was a wakeup call for me. How does one wake up without a wakeup call?

My hope for you, dear reader, is that this is your own personal wakeup call. I hope that you look past what is shiny, selfish, and generic and ask yourself: are you living your days as if they were your last? That is my resolution for the New Year. I am going to experience new things, jump out of my comfort zone, and know that when I go to bed each night, that I have no regrets. If today were my last day on earth, I would want to say that it was a life well lived.

This is your wakeup call, will you answer?