2014--Onward, but not Forward

Onward:  to or toward what is ahead in space or time

Due to technical difficulties (the loss of the domain I created in 2006), and a loooong season of limbo and transition, RefreshMoments has been offline for far too long. But then, that's kind of parallel with the rest of my life.

So this is where my word of the year comes in. Onward. Moving on. 

We spent three years not knowing where the Lord was leading next. I learned to settle in and truly take things a day at a time. We saw God provide in ways we couldn't have predicted and wouldn't have asked. I watched for the joys in small moments and learned to invest in friendships knowing that they might very well be short term.

And then, exactly a year ago, everything we'd packed into storage two months prior was loaded into a huge moving truck and transported 1000 miles away to a state I'd only visited once--as part of my husband's interview process. We moved from a state with no winter at all, to one with 6 months (or more) of snow! From a suburban town that's part of a multi-million person region, to a rural community in a state with twice the mass and 10% the population of our previous home. In short, everything is different.

While 2013 was a new start, the process of "settling in" was just a different kind of limbo for me. Helping the boys get adjusted to new schools, finding new activities, making new friends and learning to appreciate what's special about this new place took all of my time and energy. 

In the meantime, I feel like I have been on "pause." It was an intentional pause, but even so, just like a DVD player will shut off if left on "pause" too long, a life can't stay paused either.

So when I began to consider what word might encapsulate my life for the coming year, the word "onward" is the one that sticks. 

Onward is different from "forward." Forward is a directional word. It implies movement toward a specific location. I couldn't claim "forward" for this year as I'm really not sure which direction God will be moving me. I do have a (children's) book contract to fulfill, so I know writing will be part of my year, but I'm not sure if it will be the focus. I don't know if I'll be putting more energy into my HR/recruiting work, or if God has something new for me. I don't yet have a specific place in ministry locally; I'm waiting to see where God will use me.

I like the definition of "onward." I know I am moving ahead from this point. No more treading water, no more limbo, no more 'stuck.' I look forward to seeing what "onward" will take me toward. 

Is this an "onward" year for you, or a "forward" year? Where do you see yourself headed in 2014?


BARBIE said...

Welcome back Mary! I would think my live is more moving onward than forward. But lately I seem to be going in every different direction. I look forward to your writing!

RefreshMom said...

Thanks Barbie! I appreciate you hanging in there with me during my various breaks. I know you can relate to life getting in the way when we think we're headed someplace in particular and then have a hard time getting anywhere at all! I'm excited about the "onward" concept--as long as I'm not stuck, whichever direction I go is good.

I'm excited to see all the doors God is leading you through too. As long as you're following Him, it's the right direction!

Love you friend.

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