Trying to get in the habit of reflection. I am inspired by author, blogger, Emily P. Freeman. She teaches about decision making, living a reflective life, and in her teaching she models her reflective practices. At the end of each month she asks three questions. At the end of March these were her questions:
- Where did you see God in March?
- When did you feel most like yourself in March?
- What is one word you’re holding onto as we move into April?
As you can see these are not easy questions. In her monthly newsletter, Emily answered these questions for her own life. I’m inspired to attempt them here. I still find this very difficult but so worth the effort to share even if it feels awkward!
I consider days of old …Psalm 77:5-6 CSB
At night I remember my music;
I meditate in my heart, and my spirit ponders.
Where did you see God in March?
To get started I looked back at the pictures I took in March. Funny, when I asked my husband where he saw God in March, Ron said in the faces of his grandsons. And that’s exactly what my pictures revealed … about half of them were of those precious boys.
I also saw God in long thin needles, two vaccination shots that allow me to resume some normal interactions, lunch with friends, hugs, travel, family dinners.
I saw God in the beauty of plants singed by ice now reappearing out of the earth – new life. I had been wondering if the snow apocalypse in Texas in February had killed our perennials but I’m pleased to say they were not killed! They are hardier than I imagined!
When did you feel most like yourself in March?
Much of March I did not feel well. I had a nagging malaise that I could not name. I questioned if the C19 vaccine was to blame. I wondered if an autoimmune issue that sometimes flares up was at it again. Too much of the month I was sedentary but I felt most like myself on the days when I took long walks with Ron. I so enjoy the walking and talking, hand in hand. It seems being on a walk just lends itself well to talking – often about the scripture we are reading, or the theology we are studying. (By the way, a source of the malaise has been uncovered and cleared up! Already the first days of April are so much better!)
Carefully consider the path for your feet, and all your ways will be established.Proverbs 4:26 CSB
What is one word you’re holding onto as we move into April?
This question has maybe been the most difficult. But I’ve decided that I’m holding onto the word, “expectant!” Ron and I are fully vaccinated so we are feeling safer ourselves, feeling like we are not a threat to others. We have maintained a low profile, wearing masks and such not just for ourselves but to protect others as well. As we enter April, I’m feeling expectant about interacting with others, about our next adventures. But my word for April goes beyond the ordinary! I also want to look for the unusual, the beautiful, the unexpected, even the inexplicable! I want a greater sense of wonder! Ephesians 3:20 – 21 says, Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory…!”
I thought about my waysPsalm 119:59 CSB
and turned my steps back to your decrees.
If you are new to the idea of reflecting on life, I highly recommend The Next Right Thing podcast or blog – maybe start with #84, A Beginner’s Guide to Self-Reflection or maybe #150 A Guide for Personal Reflection.
I’m curious if you are open to reflecting at the end of each month? If you have a reflective practice, I’d love for you to share it in the comments!