2010 was a rough year for a lot of people. Even our Pastor, in his weekly newsletter, commented on how difficult 2010 was for many of the people in our church family. With the economy struggling, there are so many people stuggling financially. It seems like 2010 was a "bad year" for health as well. Eric and I both had family members diagnosed with and/or being treated for cancer in 2010, as well as friends stuggling with cancer or other long term illnesses. Eric's sister struggled through a difficult, high risk pregnancy, resulting in the birth of her beautiful daughter, who spent about a month in the NICU before going home at the close of 2010. Most people we know, ourselves included, are too busy, a little (or a lot) too stressed, tired, etc.
I am not a "New Years" fan. I am not big into resolutions, though I like reflecting back on the past year. I don't like fireworks or the anti-climactic nature of "the ball dropping". I don't like waking up throughout the night because some idiots in my neighborhood decide to set off fireworks at times when any normal person should be sleeping (even on New Years Eve).
I noticed on facebook in the past few days that many of my FB friends are sharing thoughts on their 2010. Quite a few view 2010 with "good riddance" in hopes of a better 2011. I guess I can't blame them if they've had the kind of year I described up above.
But I had a thought this morning about 2010 and looking ahead to 2011. I think it's perfectly natural to wish for "the best" for this upcoming year. To hope that it is an improvement over the previous year in a "I hope life just gets better and better" sort of way. But, I think it's also important to think about the blessings of our year.
God's blessings in 2010 were not just the "good" things that happened to us. We can't thank God for joys and plenty, but get grumpy about things happening that we didn't want or don't understand. If you are reading this post, you join me in the group of people who were blessed with an entire year of living in 2010. A year of relationships, growth, experience. Maybe not all of the details are what we would have chosen for ourselves, but they were all blessings just the same, whether we SEE the blessing right now or not.
So, I thank God this morning for the blessing of 2010. I thank God that even though not everything that happened in the past year was easy or understandable, He blessed me and those I love in innumerable ways. I look forward to 2011 and the relationship, growth and experiences it holds for all of us.