Sunday, September 6, 2009

Happy Birthday!

Sorry, it's late. It's been a busy (the good kind) day.

And right now, my pillow is calling me with a sweet and gentle voice. So, I'll keep this brief.

Today is exactly one year from my very first post for this blog. Although, I never actually published that post. I rambled quite a bit in it. I remember kicking the idea for this blog around in my head for quite some time, and then one day feeling very strongly that I needed to just get on with it. But it still took a few more tries and a lot of effort and soul searching to finally come up with a post I felt okay publishing.

It was really scary. I didn't know how to really explain what I was trying to do, or where this would take me. And as I've confessed, commitment to anything isn't really my strong point. But I knew it was something I was supposed to do, so I took a tiny step of faith forward and began. I think I had kind of a rough start as I tried to figure out what exactly we were trying to accomplish and the best way to get there. But, with your help and encouragement, I think we've done and grown a lot together.

As I've been thinking about the inception of this blog lately, I've been comparing my life then to my life now. I am happy to report that I'm on a whole different level now. One that I hadn't been on in years. One I wasn't sure I was capable of ever getting to again.

I'm not going to give this blog 100% of the credit, but I do owe some of my progress to the work we've begun here. Maintaining this blog isn't something that's always been easy for me. I'm getting better at it, but initially it would take me 2 or 3 hours to publish a post. Sometimes it still takes a long time. And sometimes HH worries that the stress of it isn't worth it. He's very protective of me like that.

But I still know it's something I'm meant to do, so I've kept plugging along.

And I've been so blessed.

I've been blessed by your ideas, thoughts, and insights. I'm blessed by your support and generosity. I'm blessed by your trust and confidence. And faith. And I'm blessed by the camaraderie I feel when I think of you as I write a post and then when I'm reading your response.

And so, as He always does, the Lord has blessed me one hundred fold for my small effort in this blog. Because of the nature of life and progress, I could never pinpoint exactly how much of my current happiness and security I owe to this blog. But I do wonder where I would be without it. I believe that the Lord has given me greater insights to finding joy because I am willing to devote my time and effort here. And because what we focus on in life is what we find. This blog has, of course, turned my focus much more to finding joy. And so, joy is what I've found.

I know Abiding Joy has been of the most benefit to me, but I hope you've gained from it as well. Thank you all again for your help in keeping this blog (and me) going.

Here's to another joyful year!


Spencer and Kimberly said...

Happy Birthday to the blog! I think you've done a great job with this blog, Cheryl, and I enjoy reading it each week even if I don't comment a lot. I think it's a great idea and I wish more people would read it. I do what I can to spread the word!

Linda said...

Thank goodness you gave birth to this wonderful blog where we can share our thoughts and ideas and learn from each other. Thanks for doing it no matter what. When I read what you write I feel the Spirit, and I am uplifted. Just like its title, this blog has brought me more joy, especially the "abiding" kind, over and over again. I've also enjoyed reading the comments because we all come from different backgrounds. Thanks to everyone who's shared a part of his or her self.

Amy said...

I've also enjoyed this blog. Thanks for being such a smart sister and coming up with this idea and sticking to it. And thanks for caring enough to want to help other people too. You've had a big influence on me this year and motivated me to make some changes in my life. I'm a happier person today than I was a year ago. Love you!