New beginnings are something I’m fond of. The slipping of the old into the new, the comings and goings. I crave these things, whether they’re found in a new haircut, a reorganized space, or, as we breathlessly wait for tonight, the start of a completely new year.

Comings and goings, for all their worth, are still bittersweet. You wait expectantly, heart racing, as the new approaches. Yet, you can’t help looking over your shoulder at all you’re leaving behind. The beauty with the brokenness, joy with the mourning, bitter with the sweet.

As I waited for 2015 to come to a close one year ago, I was mourning. When a year comes to a close, it tends to make you nostalgic. I turned around and remembered all the loss, all the pain, and all the brokenness that year had carried. It hurt.

2016 was a much better year, one full of travel, new opportunities, and connections. Even the best of years still leave room for change and growth though. This is what makes me ecstatic about the approach of a new year, even after such a great one. As wonderful as 2016 was, 2017 still opens a door to move forward.

Reflections tend to be crystal clear, even if the way forward was murky and confusing in the actual moment. 2016 taught me that it’s important to have dreams that are so huge they scare you, because God’s purpose is fulfilled by things that are almost too big for us to comprehend. It taught me that heartbreak isn’t permanent, that loneliness is the propellant of personal growth, and that even when you think you can’t handle it, you probably can.

So, bring on 2017. Go do things that scare you. Dream bigger than you’ve dared before. Set goals and smash them to pieces. Live boldly, love greatly, and follow God relentlessly. 

The comings and goings continue.

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