the benefit of Hindsight.

the benefit of Hindsight.

Around this time of year people start asking, “What was your New Year’s resolution? Did you keep it?” Technically, I did keep my resolution, but only because I didn’t make one! Instead of making resolutions, I prefer to look back on the year and take stock of what I learned and how I did (or did not) grow. Last year I did this same thing in blog form and cataloged the lessons I had learned. Why not try it again this year?

work in progress

Personal Highlights:

I wrote a book. And edited it myself. Three times. And then wrote and edited the book proposal and submitted it. That easily tops the list.

I started praying the Rosary daily.

Daily Mass has become a habit that I don’t even want to think about breaking.

I crossed two more cathedrals off of my list!

I endured – heartbreak, uncertainty, spiritual dryness, and am coming out stronger and more in love with God than ever before.

Blog Highlights:

Bought the “worthy of Agape” domain!

Reached my 200th post!

“worthy of Agape” has been viewed in 105 countries (which is 104 more than I’ve been to!)!

I started writing for Ignitum Today and began co-editing/managing The Papist, in addition to other guest posts!

I’ve made lots of new blogging friends, and joined the Catholic Sorority – the blogosphere has been a real blessing this year!

My lessons learned in 2012:

Blog stats are a lovely and addicting thing to track, but they aren’t why I write.

Writing a book is easier than writing a book proposal.

Waiting to hear back about said book proposal is a trying experience!

Sometimes the things we plan on don’t work out. Though their end may be painful, God can bring beauty out of the pain.

Praying for and writing to my future husband is a great source of comfort.

This year I learned the value of sisterhood. I learned the value of true friendship, of friends that are there for you through thick and thin, not just when the clouds are gray or the sun is shining, but through it all. Those are the friends worth the world. Cherish them.

There is value in disappearing and finding yourself surrounded by nothing but the love of God.

True friends understand how difficult confessions are, and how hard it can be to share our past with each other. When confessions like that arise, true friends, and those who really care about our hearts, imitate the love and mercy of Jesus.

I have a burning desire for Jesus and I’ve learned how painful it can be to separate myself from His love through my own sins.

In a very real, and, at times, painful way, I learned the necessity and value of guarding my heart. I learned what happens when I don’t – a lesson that won’t soon be forgotten.

Sometimes I can have the heart of a harlot. God’s love is bigger and He patiently waits for me while I play the harlot and cheat on His love. His mercy is unending.

I’ve learned a lot. I experienced a broken heart, the likes of which I was sure would actually kill me, and I came out stronger because of it. Pain and agony led me to a deeper and more profound relationship with God. One relationship can hardly be compared to the other and if I could get that first relationship back but I had to sacrifice my deeper relationship with God the choice would be obvious and easy.

I’ve been blessed to see friends get married, have babies, and experience joys and trials in their lives. I’ve traveled, I’ve loved, I’ve been angry, and I’ve been at peace. I’ve written more than I thought I would and tried to learn through every experience God has placed me in. As I look back on the blogs from this year and the experiences that have gone with them, I see Him leading me through everything. That alone gives me more peace than anything else. He is always leading me and loving me, even when I turn my back on Him or try to limit His influence in my life.

I’m a work in progress. I’m still learning. But as long as I keep digging deeper into His heart and planting myself there, letting my roots drink freely of His love, then I think trust that I’ll be okay. I believe I will flourish and that the future is full of promise and hope.

Here’s to a joyous and blessed 2013!

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