2007 is going to be an interesting year for me. I say this because there's a number of things that's changed within me. I have actual goals for the new year and I'm actually excited at the possibility of doing some really cool things.

I'm learning to expect less from the people around me. I'm understanding that there are certain things I can only glean from the presence of God that I will never have with those around me. Because Jesus is now the Mediator between myself and all other realities He also is the bridge between me and all my relationships.

I'm learning to expect God to do His work rather than expect something from the people around me.

I'm reading a book called The Cost Of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the book is seriously the best book I've read in a long time. I've been reading about "cheap grace" versus "costly grace" and it's been convicting me and causing me to look at my life. In a nutshell cheap grace is grace without discipleship, while costly grace is grace with discipleship.

I'm finally learning to love people. In this I mean I'm learning to look at the downtrodden, the hurting, the outcast, and the poor in the eyes of love, while at the same time learning to look at the beautiful, the rich, and the ones who have it all together in the same eyes of love. From both ends of the spectrum I'm learning to love people through the eyes of Christ.
 
For me to look at the downtrodden with humility and sympathy was a very hard thing. I always thought of myself too highly. God's been bringing me low. For me to look at the ones who have it all together without jealousy or covetousness was a very hard thing. God's in a sense been showing me that we are all truly equal in His eyes.

I'm learning to accept suffering and defeat and rejection knowing that God is in control and understands everything I'm going through. I'm learning to pick up my daily cross and bear it with all the joy the Holy Spirit puts in me, knowing that my Christ carried a far greater burden, a far greater cross. The beauty of the Christian life comes in the constant dying to the flesh. I must die. I must lose. Before I can be consumed by the heavenly, Christly joy that surpasses all understanding, I must first accept death to myself.

I'm finally learning how to be a good friend. All my life I've struggled with loyalty, with trusting people, with believing they actually wanted to be my friend. PBC has taught me a great deal on how to really be a friend. I know it sounds pretty corny, but hey that's me.

I'm realizing that I'm still really scared of life, still a bit scared of what God has in store for me, still scared of whether I'm doing the right things; but I'm learning to trust God. I'm learning that what God's after is that He wants me to trust Him more than anything.

So all in all, looking forward is actually something that's been pretty sobering but also pretty enlightening. 2006 has been an awesome year. 2007 is going to be even better.

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