One Thing Remains

As the new year approaches, it’s only natural to start to reflect on where you were last year at this time.  A few weeks ago, it came slamming into my consciousness as I got in the mail a new contract to renew my lease on my apartment.  I can not believe how quickly this year has flown by for me!

It seems like just yesterday I had families and co workers meeting me at my apartment to help me get settled.  I distinctly remember last year on New Years Eve, only having lived in Birmingham for 3 days, hanging pictures in my apartment late that night (since I knew it wouldn’t bother anyone) and watching Gilmore Girls on my dvd player since my cable wasn’t hooked up yet.  Oh, how things can change in a years time!

As I mentioned in a blog post early in 2012, every year for the last several years the Lord has placed a word on my heart to focus on for the year.  Usually, He starts revealing that to me a few months before the new year.  It is always such a joy when I first start to think, “oh, is this my word??!!”  I always know that it will be a journey learning about that word, and that I will grow to know the Lord in a new way.

My word last year was “love.”  Even though I knew going into 2012 that would be my word for the year, I couldn’t help but be surprised when I found this as I was unpacking last year…

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

From time to time, I stick notecards with scripture different places to help me remember truths,…and this was the only one that made the journey from Huntsville to Birmingham. So, when I found it, I laughed, grabbed a piece of tape, and stuck it to my mirror in my bathroom.  It has remained there all year and been a constant reminder.  Boy, has He taught me a lot about this scripture and His love this year.

Then, a few months into living here, a friend who had helped me with the youth ministry at Cove, Amy, sent me the Max Lucado  book A Love Worth Giving.  She had remembered “love” was my word for the year.  I was told to read it and pass it on to someone else just as it was passed on to her. It is a good read that walks you through each section of that exact piece of scripture.  I finished it, and have been plagued trying to figure out who to pass it along to, and sure fire in God’s good old timing, He showed me who the other day. 🙂

The things I have learned about love this year…

God can show His love to you through anyone He wants.  I think due to some things in my past, I am always waiting for the other shoe to drop, since that has been my experience with a lot of people.  I think that is also why the 5 or so close friends I have, that I actually “let in,” I treasure so much.  However, this year, He has shown me that it is ok to let people in,…because ultimately He’s got my back.  Love and trust are one in the same to me I have discovered.  I can love others with out expectations (most of the time, I am human), because I trust Him.  Even if everyone and everything I have ever known falls through, HE won’t.  Never has.  Never will.  God is patient with me.  He is kind to me. He stands by and says, “ok Caroline, when you are done grasping at straws, I will be waiting.”  He doesn’t have to tell me how great He is.  When I am disobedient, He doesn’t turn me into a pillar of salt (thank the Lord), although He may let me struggle through the consequences since I HAD to do things my way.  He even forgets the things I have done wrong.  He will protect me.  He trusts me enough to not force His love on me. The list goes on and on… and ultimately one thing remains… Your love never fails, it never gives up, it never runs out on me.” (from the song by Jesus Culture).  A whole year, and I am still learning on this word, but truthfully, it makes it much easier to love Him and people the more you trust and understand His love.

This year, my word  2013 is peace.  More to come on that…


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