20 Lessons from 2020: Part 2

This is part two of my post titled 20 things God taught me in 2020. If you haven’t read the first part, that’s where I shared the lessons God taught me about Himself and His church. Check it out here.

During my times in the mornings with God, I would often begin by asking Him to reveal to me things about myself I needed to change. As I sat with His Word, He showed me so many things about myself and my perspective about life in general. I would like to share some of those precious lessons with you.

5 Things God taught me about Myself

#11 I cannot control anything other than myself

I wouldn’t say I’m a control freak but I definitely like to be in control! God used 2020 to teach me that the only thing I can control is myself- my behavior, my actions, my emotions and my mindset. I may not be able to change the pandemic situation or the problems that arise from it, but I can control how I react to them. I can deal with my problems graciously. It is not always easy but I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13).

A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. Proverbs 15:1

#12 I must cultivate an attitude of gratitude

Gratitude is not only important in human relationships but it is a crucial aspect in our relationship with God. It is easy to focus on the things we don’t have, but it takes intentionality to be grateful for the blessings we have received. When I was able to thank God for all that He’d bestowed me with, I was able to live a freer, fuller and happier life.

In 2020 I was grateful for my loved ones. For health and protection. For quality time with my kids. For the outdoors and the beauty of nature. For all the frontline workers in the hospitals. For technology. For books. For the Bible. For a house. For food, water, clothing. For money. For life.

“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:1

#13 I have the best people

My husband has been a godsend during the time. He’s been swamped at work but still come home and washed all the dishes so I could get some time to myself. He’s been there for me and the kids and provided us with all we needed. I wouldn’t have been able to face 2020 without him. My kids have been the real MVPs. Their lives changed completely overnight but they adjusted so well!

God gave me the best family. My parents, sibling, cousins, aunts and uncles, grandparents, have all rallied alongside us. From an encouraging text message or call to say hi to babysitting the kids and bringing us food, they have done it all.

My church family and my friends, my family by choice; have loved on me. We’ve all been in the same boat and knowing that has been an encouragement in itself!

“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.” 1 Thessalonians 5:11

#14 I am more creative than I thought

I’ve never thought of myself as creative. In fact, I’ve always joked that I was creatively challenged! Surprisingly, during the lockdown I was able to get a glimpse of my own creativity! I learned to be creative with food when restaurants were shut. I brought the outdoors inside the house for my kids when we were locked down. Just thinking outside the box really helped me do fun stuff for my family.

Our God is so creative. Just look at the majestic mountains and the roaring seas. Isn’t He the greatest artist ever? And because I am created in His image, I can tap into His creativity. God created us to be creative. So however creatively challenged you think you are, if God is in you, you can be creative. Ask God and He will show you all the gifts and talents He has given you. (And it won’t hurt to look up Pinterest as well!)

So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27

#15 I must take the first step

God taught me that I can’t always wait for others to take the first step. I’m not usually the initiator but I’m learning. Instead of waiting for a call I chose to make the call. Instead of waiting for someone to offer help I decided to ask for help when I needed it. Rather than wanting people to serve me, I am learning to serve others. Instead of waiting for someone to say sorry, God is teaching me to ask for forgiveness.

Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth. 1 John 3:18

5 Things God taught me about Life

#16 Life is short

If this pandemic has taught me one thing, it is the frailty of life. We really don’t know how long we have to live. Life is short, live it well. Find magic in the mundane. Celebrate the little victories. Use your time wisely. Choose love. Forgive easily. Be thankful. Honor God.

 I love C.T Studd’s poem, “Only one life ‘twill soon be past, only what’s done for Christ will last.” Our life on earth may be short, but our life in Christ is eternal. We ought to live it wisely.

Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. James 4:14

#17 Choose love

It is easy to love those who think like us and agree with us. But the real challenge is to love those who think, act, and live differently than us. It is not always easy but then again it’s not impossible. Whenever I’ve had a difficult time loving someone I try and remind myself of Christ’s sacrifice for me. Christ died for me not because I was easy to love or beautiful or obedient to Him. He died for me when I was His enemy. And I can choose to love others the same way because of Jesus. You can do it too. Ask God, He will help you.

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. John 13:34

# 18 Reflection

The shift from our busy lives has taught me the value of reflection. Reflection always reminds me to “check in” with myself and God about the state of my spiritual life. I have spent a lot of time in the past few months reflecting, and God has been showing me so many things in my life that I need to change, areas that I need to step forward in faith, and areas I need to take a step back. These times with the Lord have been the most precious to me.

Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23-24

#19 Technology is a gift

The internet is not all bad. I admit there are some major drawbacks, but I really don’t know how I would have survived the lockdown without it! If it is used sensibly, the internet can be a valuable resource for us. Because of the internet, we could attend school, talk to our friends, go on virtual tours to a zoo, a farm, and visit exciting places from the comfort of our home. Daniel Tiger, Noddy, and Puffin Rock have kept my kids entertained and me sane a number of times! As long as we monitor our internet use and use it with discernment, it can be a wonderful tool.

So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31

“All things are lawful for me,” but not all things are helpful. “All things are lawful for me,” but I will not be enslaved by anything. 1 Corinthians 6:12

# 20 Heaven is my Home

If only we would live our lives in line with the lyrics of Jim Reeves’ famous song “This world is not my home, I’m just passing through”, O what exhilarating lives we would live! Then the losses and heartache of this world wouldn’t be so difficult to endure. We wouldn’t hold on to our “treasures on earth” so tightly. We would take more risks and live life to the full.

We must keep our eyes focused on heaven- where we will find eternal and perfect comfort. In Revelation (21:4) heaven is described as a place where “God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain; the first things have passed away.” There will be no pandemic or COVID-19 in heaven. All the troubles of this world will pass away. Let us keep busy serving the Lord, keeping our eyes focused on our permanent home.

“But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior.” Philippians 3:20

This past year I may have lost a little but gained SO much. This time has deepened my walk with God and enriched my faith in Him. The Lord has used this pandemic to teach me invaluable lessons. As we enter 2021 I’m sure He will continue to teach me ever more. What has He been teaching you?

(Read Part 1 of this post here)

boredandbusymama
boredandbusymama
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6 Comments

  1. Good to read what you have written Shiphrah,

    One thing God has been teaching me –

    Never for a Moment Allow a sense of Security in Anything Other than God – Whether it be friends, relationships, money, health, positions or any other management mantras. The closer you come to God the more God cleans us of all such cobwebs.

    • Thank you Vinoy! Yes, so true..The closer I grow to the Lord the more I realize that He is indeed ENOUGH! Thank you for sharing!

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