Looking forward to 2017

If I had to describe 2016 with just one word, for me it would be change. It was a year of constant change.
Just when one thing was over and I was getting used to it, there would be another change. Sometimes I can embrace change wholeheartedly. But then there are some changes which I accept only after much agonizing, kicking and screaming. I am often surprised that  those which I resist the most usually turn out to be the best in the long run.
Humans for the most part tend to resist change. When change invades our territory we can feel like we have lost control. When in truth we aren’t in control anyway, God is.
Change brings uncertainty, an unknown and we don’t like that feeling. Sudden changes can be a total surprise and catches us off guard. That leaves us without time to get used to the particular change.
Change means different. As creatures of habit, changes which affect those habits tend to throw us off course for a while.
Change sometimes diminishes our confidence because we aren’t sure we can accept it.
Change can sometimes hurt or affect our emotions like the empty nest syndrome or losing someone we love.
Change, however, can also be good for us. A change of pace, a change of scenery, doing something new and exciting. It’s really all in how we look at it.
Before heading into a new year, no matter how much I am looking forward to it, we need to look back to see what there was to learn from the previous year. It also helps us to go into a new year with the right attitude.
Attitude is where I need a shot in the arm. As the year waned down it seemed people got on my nerves more and more and my tolerance level was at an all time low. My keep your mouth shut button, quit working a couple of times. Conversations made no sense and some people just wouldn’t listen. In the greater scheme of things, I truly like for things to run smoothly. I don’t mind having confrontational discussions as long as it is a two way street of communication. Nothing can be resolved when it is just one way. I listen to people and consider their opinions but not everyone is like that.
I have to remember that God created each of us unique. It’s what makes the world go round.
God has put me in a waiting mode in an area of my life and like most, I am impatient in that area. We want it right now but that’s not God’s way. It is all in His timing and we must trust it. I do, but still I get impatient at times.
A new year brings all kind of possibilities. I do not make resolutions as I feel if you don’t make or keep them you feel as if you failed. Failure is not an option!
There are areas I will work on though. Diet, exercise, overall health and becoming better than I was the day before. I’ve got to take better care of myself and not let my doing for others drain me. It’s something women struggle with I think. We should care for others but we’ve got to keep a balance there and take care of ourselves as well.  It’s a process.
Our family year ended with one granddaughter having surgery and spending Christmas in the hospital and a daughter getting a health diagnosis we weren’t expecting. All of this means change for all of us.
Life is constantly changing and we must learn to accept those changes and adjust accordingly, no matter how difficult it may seem. How we deal with it, determines in part, whether it will be a good outcome or not.
We have to embrace our feelings about change and even express them to people we trust. That let’s us get it out of our system and then we must move forward. Too many people get stuck in the past and can’t seem to accept the change and move forward. Whether it’s a change in our lifestyle or personal life, we cannot get stuck there.
We can’t let these changes make us angry or resentful. Doing so can make us very unlikable and bitter in our old age. And I have to tell you, it’s not always easy to just let go and move forward.
We might as well make up our minds (me included) that change will always be a part of life and to embrace it and figure out a way to deal with whatever comes. For me that entails a lot of prayer — pressing into God harder and listening closer to His voice.
It is my prayer for each of you that 2017 be better than 2016 and that blessings abound. I am also still praying for our country and that we see a change in its direction as well. There are so many areas where we need a good change in our country.
Some of those changes can start with us by being kinder than necessary, being more compassionate, reaching out to those in need and working on our attitudes. Kindness is contagious, can spread and it begins with us. Blessings and happiness for the New Year. ©2016

VICTORIA SIMMONS is an author, columnist, motivational speaker, minister and publisher of The Georgia Post/Byron Buzz. Contact her at: vsimmons54@gmail.com

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About vsimmons54

Veteran journalist of 40 years. Editor, Motivational Speaker, Ordained Minister, CEO of A Light in the Darkness Ministries, Lensclusive Photography, Babbling Brook Consulting and Design, event planner and author. I love to write and speak and I love Jesus. I also do copy writing and editing. Recently co-authored Vanished Towns Revisited.
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