Well…2009 is coming to a close and part of me feels this slight, little tug to write something profound to wrap up 2009; a kind of year-in-review with some final words of wisdom before the onslaught on 2010…
["Profound"...what in the world is this part of me thinking..."profound"?]
In any case…here is my last post of 2009 (profound or not):
As I write this I am sitting in my most favorite chair in the world (a chair my wife despises…but that story is for another time). During this time of the year I am on vacation…recovering from a busy Christmas season. My wife is still working so we generally do not go anywhere, but that is fine…sleeping in and doing absolutely nothing is still good for my soul as I refuel for the drive towards Lent and Easter…after which I will take another vacation (this time getting out of town with my wife).
So as I sit here (refueling in my favorite chair drinking coffee) I find myself reflecting on the past year (funny how that happens when a year or anything comes to an end). So listed below are my top ten highlights from the past year (in no particular order):
(10)Washington vacation – After Easter my wife and I enjoy heading out to the state of Washington (where I did my internship) and hanging out with friends and seeing the sights. This year we did a lot of hiking and exploring new things.
(9) Losing 65 pounds – This took place from March through October in an effort to get into better running shape for 2010. I have maintained my weight since then and am enjoying my new, healthier lifestyle.
(8) “The vote” – This is of course referring to the ELCA Churchwide assembly vote about homosexuality in August. This is not a “highlight” but it sure is memorable. It created a lot of discussion and soul-searching to say the least.
(7) Three weddings – Two of these were people from Salem and one couple is a friend of mine and Connie’s. They were a lot of fun to do and be a part of.
(6) Release Time and confirmation classes – I have some really fun students this year. They are active and willing to learn. A highlight within this one is one of my Release Time students reading scripture at the Christmas Eve worship service. It has been fun watching her grow up over the last few years.
(5) Christmas snow storm (“Winter Storm Eric”) – This was a little annoying but once again memorable. I think this snow storm will be talked about for a long time. The highlight here is that this snow storm caused us to slow down and therefore we got a chance to spend more quality time with family; celebrating.
(4) New patio and new bathroom – This was a long time in coming but we barely got these done before the church’s big 125th anniversary celebration (more on that coming later).
(3) Running – This is directly related to my weight lose. I am training for 2 marathons in 2010, but the highlight here is breaking a 20 minute 5K and breaking 42 minutes for 6 miles…both very exciting for me.
(2) Salem’s 125th anniversary celebration – This was a fun weekend. A lot of planning went into this and lots of people came out. Many memories were shared.
(1) Five year anniversary – 2009 was the 5 year anniversary of my ordination and wedding. The congregation planned a special recognition for me during worship (which I knew was happening but did not know details). It was a very special time of affirmation for Connie and me. After worship there was a reception and then after that Connie and I hosted a party for our wedding anniversary with our family; having a renewal of vows for all the couples. A very fun and memorable day.
2009 was indeed an eventful year. I made healthy changes in my life; had my call here affirmed; celebrated ministry milestones; and continued to enjoy people growing in their faith. Many other items could have been added to this list…Praise be to God!
So as we close out 2009…blessings to you as you finish off the year and dive into a brand new year. God has been and always will be faithful. Hold on to that and enjoy the promises we have from God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Let’s see what God will do in 2010…
Happy New Year!