Sunday, January 22, 2012

The Calendar

For many years now, the choosing of the wall calendar is a task I take quite seriously. I begin considering in December what I believe the vision for the year should be.
Often it's something I feel I should focus on myself.
I remember the first year that I chose a farm-themed calendar in hopes of my own personal embracing of farm life.
Another year I picked a calendar with Bible verses because I felt my greatest need was wisdom and encouragement from God's word.
After the farm began, a calendar with peaceful porch scenes graced our wall as I hoped to return to a more relaxed existence.
2010 held the vision of a fixed-up, rehabilitated farm in which hosting a wedding might be possible by year's end. (It's a good thing someone had the vision because a wedding would surely take place in December of that year!)

A challenge though has always been in establishing the vision for the approaching year while the calendar selection is still good in the mall, but waiting until after the first of January to buy the calendar at half price.

This year, the first ever, I never had a vision for the year ahead. I'd stand and stare at the calendar displays and wonder what my focus should be as we entered the new year. It never came. Finally, as the calendars dropped to half price, then a quarter of the price, I knew I had better make my move or I'd be tracking dates and appointments on little yellow sticky notes throughout the house.
So I picked something - anything.

The older kids asked, "What's the vision for the year? What are you embracing this year?" I told them I just had to buy an "anything" calendar.

An incident that further compounded the mystery of the vision-less year took place just weeks after I had laboriously entered all the year's "not-to-forget" dates on my new generic calendar.
I had the calendar, along with notes of many new appointments needing to be recorded on the pages, spread across my workspace on the family room floor.
I was multi-tasking by looking up conferences and other events online while answering farm emails - only breaking long enough to make a pot of hot cocoa for the kids.

Not knowing that a stomach virus was about to make its rounds in our house, Sheridan gulped down her hot cocoa only minutes before standing over my multi-tasking work station and announcing that she felt sick. Sparing the reader unnecessary details, my vision-less calendar was ruined by a sudden and unexpected shower of cocoa.

So, this year is doubly vision-less as I had to buy a calendar from the local office supply - the only folks still selling calendars in late January.
I can't help but wonder if there is any significance to it all. I am reminded, whenever I look at the very generic calendar, to maintain a posture of submission to whatever God would like to do this year in my life and the life of my family - as it's doubly "anything" year.

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