2009 was fantastic. Well…kind of. This year consisted of incredible highs and lows. Among the highs were the wedding, seminary, and CPE. Among the lows were some family/relationship difficulties (although they were obviously worked out), financial troubles, and CPE. Yes, CPE was both a high and a low. Kirsten and I are settling into our marriage (not in a boring way, I don’t think). We’re learning how we best live together, how to be social together, and how to stay at least somewhat independent. It has certainly been a work in progress and will continue to be. Through all the highs and the lows, 2009 has proven to be fairly stressful, as in, more stressful than the sum of its parts. 2009 was a veritable mix of praises and laments–but there have been more smiles than tears. In the wake of such a year, I am very thankful for friends and family (especially family) for being supportive in more ways than I thought possible, during both the good and the not-so-good times. I am truly blessed.

In 2010, both Kirsten and I have decided to live more simply. This has slightly different meanings for each of us, but we pray that is leads to more peace, a stronger relationship, better time management, and a healthier/happier life. Another one of our main goals is to be in bed around 10pm every night except weekends…when we still plan on getting 8 hours of sleep. I plan to continue discerning the best way I can spend time in prayer and study each day–continuing to work on opening myself up and listening to God. I also plan on running a marathon in June. Yes, I’m serious. Grandma’s marathon on June 19, 2010. So that’ll obviously require some diligent training. Finally, at least for the month of January, I hope to post something on this blog each day. I’ve done a crappy job of posting these past few months, but I think I’ve had pretty good reasons not to. Regardless, I miss writing. I forsee some deeply theological posts, some pop culture (and possibly its theological implications), some sports stuff, and some cute cat pictures.

Now, I’m not calling these things “resolutions.” It may be a matter of semantics, but I think we are continually shaping ourselves to be happier, love better, and know God more. My school schedule, over and above the new year, greatly lends itself to these new changes. That said, the newness of the year, the lengthening of the days, and the continued season of Christmas are all about beginnings. Kirsten and I have much to look forward to this year: internship (and the travel that it might entail), one last undergrad credit, our 1-year anniversary, a marathon, new jobs, and constantly growing as a family (no, not with children yet). So, I pray that 2010 brings us many joys and adventures. I hope that in living lives of simplicity, Kirsten and I can best be present to the complex trials, tribulations and triumphs that inherently present themselves. And that we may live with (and spread) the Peace of God that passes all understanding.

I hope and pray that you are able to look back fondly upon 2009. Even if you aren’t, I pray that God blesses each and every one of you (if anyone is reading this) with peace, joy, faith, love, family, truth, and adventure.