Plot Twist by Jacob Blouse

Jacob Blouse   -  

In some ways this has felt like one of the longest years of my life, yet I cannot believe that 2020 is coming to an end!

This time of year, I do what I do every year. I sit back and reflect on what kind of year I have experienced. The highs, the lows, the joys and even the heartache.

I read a news article that was tittled, “2020: The Year of Fear” and I thought to myself – Who gets to decide that my year was based around fear? I mean, they don’t know what I have experienced over these past several months to make that statement.

The more and more I thought about what has taken place over the past eleven months, the more this idea kept crossing my mind – PLOT TWIST… WHAT IF 2020 HAS BEEN YOUR BEST YEAR YET? 

After everything we have seen this year with wildfires, Covid-19, hate, violence, politics, and so many more events… To make a statement like that sounds crazy!

When most people made their goals for this year, I am sure they didn’t right these craziness we have experienced down. Most of us make our yearly goals based around social or economic standards, which isn’t always wrong to do, but what if that isn’t how we should be rating success this year?

To better clarify… What if 2020 has been your greatest year for personal and spiritual growth? This is a personal question that only you can answer. I encourage you to think on this question.

When I started having these thoughts a couple weeks ago, I decided that to best answer them I would need to journal them down and here is a few things I discovered:

  1. Covid-19 has forced me to slow down and enjoy what I have, and not what I am trying to achieve.
  2.  When quarantine went into effect, I grew a greater appreciation for spending time with my family. I often take for granted how fun card games or a movie night can be. Just as long as we are together.
  3. Covid-19 made me take a look at and appreciate the work our healthcare workers provide. I do not celebrate their heroism enough.
  4. The hatred and violence against those who don’t have the same tone of skin as another has made me so restless. So restless that I have been sincerely praying for those people and having REAL conversations with them. These conversations have been so encouraging because we have taken the time to truly hear each others perspectives and stories. I can’t begin to describe how much I have grown through these conversations with someone from our own church.
  5. The political chaos has caused me to take a long look at who I am putting my trust in. It has steered me towards looking to my heavenly Father for salvation instead of any man.
  6.  As a church staff, I have seen so much growth in our leadership. This year has caused us to push past our comfort zones and dive into deeper relationships with God and the church. We have been stretched creatively to reach people in new ways that we would have never thought of before.
  7. Most of all, I took a discipleship class this year and feel like all of this slowing down has given me the gift of time. I have stepped so much closer into my relationship with God.

I have listed seven things above that are reasons why I believe this has been my best year yet. Would I prefer that all of these hardships of 2020 would’ve never happened? Sure. However, would I have grown as much as I did personally and spiritually? Maybe not. I do remember praying so many times for God to help guide me, grow me, and reveal Himself more to me. Things don’t always work out like we think, but I have seen God answer that prayer.

How has your year been? Will you try writing down your top seven ways you have grown? It is amazing what you will discover when you look with a fresh perspective. Feel free to comment or send an email to me with your perspective of how your year has been.

Here is a verse I have started quoting to myself to keep Christ as my perspective.

“So keep your thoughts continually fixed on all that is authentic and real, honorable and admirable, beautiful and respectful, pure and holy, merciful and kind. And fasten your thoughts on every glorious work of God, praising Him always.” – Philippians 4:8