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Monday, January 2, 2012

The Middle

I'm a big believer in ending well.  As 2011 drew to a close, New Year's Eve day/night was no different.  "How will we spend the day?"  "Who will we ring in the New Year with?"  These were important questions for me.

We spent the day beginning the De-Santification process (please go watch The Santa Clause 2 if you are unfamiliar with this term).  We did not finish.  In fact, it barely looks like we got started.  This is a blessing to us.  Usually, when we undertake a task, we run like the wind. Pacing ourselves hasn't been our strong suit - and so we ended 2011 with a more relaxed air about us.  Success!

True Relaxation at Work!
This relaxed atmosphere is something we've been cultivating in 2011, despite the rapid pace of our schedule.  We are vowed to living in the moment.  Winter Saturdays are filled with back-to-back-to-overlapped basketball games.  When it's Saturday, we all have on our game face to get where we need to be and be fully present in the game.  When it's over, we're committed to rest, relaxation, and resting on our laurels - if only for the day.  

New Years Eve!  We rang in the New Year with friends.  I'm always surprised at how our circles change from season-to-season or year-to-year.  Don't get me wrong, there are always a few families who we continue to journey through life together - but many others ebb in and out of our lives as we do theirs.

This year, we celebrated with families with whom we are building great friendships.  We are learning lots about each other with each new outing or activity.  And, as friendships go, we are beginning to do "nothing" together - which is a true sign of a maturing friendship - not always filled with "something to do," but rather, just enjoying one another's company.

As soon as 2011 ended, 2012 was upon us; I guess, I'm into beginning well, too.  Beginnings are scary - filled with the unknown, great anticipation, and great possibility.  I am filled with immeasurable anticipation for what this year brings.  Some friends will come home from deployments, others will head out.  Some friends are repairing marriages; some are beginning their life with children!  In our home, we are beginning Middle School, moving to double digits, sleep away camps, travel sports, and new ministry.  It's a year full of hope and promise and the ability to fail publicly and go down in flames.

Thinking about what 2012 holds, brings me to the Middle.  That's where all the stuff really happens.  Those are your highs and your lows.  Middle is where you make your memories.  When does the Middle start?  Does it start right after that cherished midnight kiss?  My Middle begins tomorrow - when school, work, and schedules resume. My middle is filled with packing lunches, helping with homework, shuttling the kids to and fro, planning vacations, and plenty of trips to Costco. I'm hoping our Middle is filled with awesome highlights that will bless our family tremendously.  I'm praying God will do immeasurably more than we could ask or imagine.

I hope you all had a promising start to the New Year, left no regrets in 2011, and are ready to embrace your Middle.  Be encouraged - you're not alone, we're all in this Middle together.