19 Things 2019 Taught Me

With the dawn of a new year, I thought it would be fun to reflect on what 2019 has taught me.

Things I learned in 2019: 

  •  Perseverance is the key to success. A dream came true this year, a dream I almost gave up on. Right before I did, God said: “Keep going!” So with one more step I am now represented as an author by my lovely Tamela Hancock Murray of the Steve Laube Agency. It’s crazy to think about, but without God’s gentle whisper and the fire of perseverance, I wouldn’t be here. 
  •  Sometimes you need to step outside your comfort zone. I made 2019 the year I would learn a foreign language. I decided to change the someday to now and started learning Korean through YouTube, online resources, music, podcasts, and the like. It was definitely out of my comfort zone. It opened my eyes to a culture different from mine and taught me respect for tradition and the value of communication. It also gave me a study buddy and a really good friend who inspires me in every sense of the word. In study and in life, she is a gem and I am blessed that our love of language and God brought us together
  • Being observant and appreciative of the people and little things in life is extremely important. I lost my Grandmother this year and her passing taught me that life is short and that each breath we breathe brings us closer to eternity. Never take for granted those God has placed in your life, because you never know when He will call them home. Look around, inhale deeply. Sit in silence. What do you notice? The blue of the sky? The warmth of your house? The chatter of siblings in the other room? The sound of your Mom, Dad, or roommate calling you? Take notice, be more observant, and give thanks to God for the little things–and the people He has blessed you with. As one song goes, Love the One You’re With.
  •  Live life in the present. I am a worrier by nature, but I am working hard to change it to warrior instead. Our Heavenly Father clothes the birds of the field and makes sure that each of His wild creations is taken care of, so why do I worry about His provision for my life? Take a deep breath and surrender to God the worries on your mind right now and float back to the present, live in the moment. This moment is precious and fleeting. It won’t last forever, which is the very reason you should enjoy it as best you can because once it’s gone–it’s gone. 
  • I am my biggest competitor. The number of times I have taken my eyes off the road God has placed me on and caught a glimpse of those doing life or their career better than me—it’s a recipe for low-self esteem and discontentment. So, instead of comparing my life (physically, mentally, and spiritually) to others, I strive to be my biggest competition. Will today’s Bekah be better than yesterday? Comparison gets you nowhere so here is to putting blinders on and running faithfully the race set before you.  
  • Keep learning. I have learned to keep learning, even in the fields that I think I know all about. One can never learn too much so keep your mind open and see where it takes you. Stay humble and allow others to teach you what you may think you know. You may be surprised. 
  • Listen more, speak less. Sometimes, someone just needs a warm heart and a tender ear. I catch myself many times throughout the day offering advice where maybe I should just be listening. Strive to be a great listener!
  • Respect your parents. Sadly, our parents won’t be with us forever, and while some teens may complain that their parents are annoying and that they just can’t wait to get away, I share a different perspective. The topic of respecting our parents has been heavy on my mind lately, and I’ll probably go deeper in a later blog post, but for now, 2019 taught me the value of respecting and honoring my parents. 
  • It’s okay to be quiet. Silence is golden and while the world pushes an extroverted idea of what we should be, I have found silence should be equally valued. Quiet is not a bad thing. 
  • Stay true to yourself. Don’t copy anyone, for you are you. You are a unique creation of God and deeply loved by Him, and He has gifted you with special gifts that no one else has.  
  • Social media isn’t everything. No, I don’t need to be on (or checking) social media for hours at a time. At most, I’m on Instagram for 20-30 minutes a day max. However, Twitter—let’s just say that is one of my biggest time wasters. I’m working on cutting down and am getting there slowly. 
  • Family first. 2019 gave me the realization that my family needs to be a priority. They are the only family I have, and I never want to take them for granted. I now have a very good system for prioritizing this. The system goes: God, family, and close friends–in that order. No matter what, I never want to forget the value of family and how blessed I am to be surrounded by human beings who love and support me. 
  • Learn to forgive… yourself. I am extremely hard on myself and self-hatred comes easily. While I was taught early in life to forgive others, it never occurred to me until recently that we should also forgive ourselves. What a concept, that the grace we extend to others should also be extended toward ourselves. 
  • Never link your happiness with anyone or anything except God. You can go searching for happiness in the world but I can guarantee you won’t find it. Maybe for a moment, you’ll be stable and thriving, but what if the person or thing that you place your happiness in–leaves? It’s important to find your happiness independent of others and things, and place your trust and heart in God.
  • Make my health (mental, physical, spiritual)  a priority. This realization came late into 2019 in a conversation where a friend urged me to stop working so hard and promise to take time away from work for myself. My health comes first, before work, before people’s expectations, and before even my own ambition.
  • Do all things, no matter how mundane, with joy. I’ve made it my goal this year to do anything and everything with a joyful attitude, and honestly it’s been a life-changing choice. When I find myself slipping under the dark cloud, I remind myself to find joy no matter how small, and I am loving the more positive perspective. 
  • It’s okay to ask for help. I’m still learning this one, and hope to get better at it. Healing from old thought patterns takes time, but I’ll continue to strive forward and work on this because God didn’t design me to do everything on my own.
  • Tradition should be respected and not forgotten. Many of the traditions and values that built America are slipping away. In my study of foreign language and culture, I find it admirable that other cultures take their time to teach and remind their offspring about the past so they will not be forgotten. I urge you to take time, listen to your grandparent’s stories, remember your history, your country’s history, and where you’ve come from. 
  • Don’t let fear grip you. Fear was my demon in 2019. That all changed when I started my podcast with my lovely co-host Tara. With her, my confidence grew. Today, I am able to say that while fear still gets to me, it’s not nearly as bad as it was. Fear is a liar and Satan’s tool at which he uses at liberty to keep us from doing God’s work. Don’t let it ensnare you. As VeggieTales likes to put it, God is bigger than the boogie man! Amen! 

0 Replies to “19 Things 2019 Taught Me”

Leave a Reply