The end of 2016 is upon us and tomorrow we’ll be ringing in a new year. 2017 stretches before us over here in Corpus Christi like a fresh canvas and we can’t wait to fill it with beautiful, intentional moments.
I have always been inspired by The Three Questions, a story by Leo Tolstoy. In it, there is a king who realized that if only he knew the right time for every action, the most necessary people and the most important thing to do, he would never fail in anything he undertook. So he called for all the wise men to come forth and answer his three questions. After listening to these supposed wise men (and all of their contradicting answers), the king decides to go and seek the wisdom of a hermit. After various events that day, the hermit concludes with this advice:
“Remember then: there is only one time that is important–Now! It is the most important time because it is the only time when we have any power. The most necessary man is he with whom you are, for no man knows whether he will ever have dealings with any one else: and the most important affair is, to do him good, because for that purpose alone was man sent into this life!”
There it is. The heart and soul of living…living with intention: being present in this moment right now, being present with the people you are with at this moment right now, and doing good at this moment right now. In other words, living this moment with purpose and intention.
I spent the greater part of 2016 learning the art of intention. I slowed down a bit and savored the moments. The simple moments like watching Joey’s passion for Shakespeare grow in his homeschool co-op, seeing William’s delight in the adventure of camping, joining in Andrew’s pure joy in losing three teeth in quick succession, witnessing Katie’s sweet, caring nature bloom as she sat by Granny’s side after a recent surgery. Then there were the bright moments of the year that I tried my best to be intentional about: the opportunity to travel by train to Missouri with Dax, the kids and my parents, the camping trips, the birthdays, the holidays, the family gatherings. I did my best to soak it all in, to memorize the beauty and wonder of each moment and to gather those thoughts in my mind with deep, heartfelt gratitude.
Yet despite all intention, I still face the end of the year wondering how we have already finished another year. My beautiful children are all one year older, blooming right here where they have been planted. My marriage is one year stronger, holding tight to the one strand that keeps it strong: love. My life is one year brighter, filled with old and new friends, beautiful memories, and the hope of an even more intentional 2017.
Dear friends, I pray that as you ring in the New Year, you prepare to find the wonder and beauty of all the intentional moments that fill your days. I look forward to hearing about those intentional moments and sharing mine with you at the end of 2017.
Blessings to you and yours,
Daxson, Stacie, Joey (9), William (7), Andrew (5), Katelyn (3)