Top 5 Things I Learned in 2018

Over the past few weeks I’ve spent some time reflecting on last year. The teacher in me craved a written summary, so I took the time to write up the Top 5 Things Learned. I’d love for you to read it and hear what you learned in 2018 too.

On a side note,  my favorite tool to use in this process is Jennie Allen’s Dream Guide where she invites you to examine last year and look ahead to the future. If you are interested – it’s not too late to check it out.

1. Deconstruction leads to reconstruction.

Yes, this logically makes a lot of sense but it has not been until this last year that I’ve begun to believe it. On the inside, deconstruction feels chaotic and confusing which are two feelings I have spent most of my life avoiding.

As a recovering control freak – I prefer to create environments where I am the perceived creator and executor of all plans and my will is what makes things happen. Anyone else? Just me…ok cool.  Ha! This perceived control makes me feel safe. However, all it took was a few major things to happen outside of “my plan” and everything came crashing down. We lost my husband’s father to cancer in 2015 at 58 years old, my daughter was born in 2016 and I discovered I was living with postpartum hypothyroid the entire first two years of her life. (Basically I was napping like it was my job and lost all my drive.) Amid these events, I felt myself slowly and at times abruptly losing control. Everything was falling apart. There is much more to this story, but I’ll save it for another post.

However, last year, in His gentleness, the Lord revealed…

it must first fall apart in order for something new to be built.

I know He was with me in my suffering and I also know He is redeeming that which caused my suffering. He oversees each detail of my life and no situation is too dark or too lost for His great love. I’ve seen Him reconstruct my heart, relationships and situations.

In trusting Him, I now see beauty in chaos. I see Him as the great Rebuilder who makes all things new.

2. God calls us into process, not a finished product.

The world says hustle, earn your worth in the products you produce. God says, come with me, learn my unforced rhythms of grace and become more like me.

It is in the becoming not the arriving that I found more.

More love, more meaning, more direction and more purpose. The greatest tool in the process of becoming for me this past year was completing my 225 hour Holy Yoga training. I am now a certified instructor and the curriculum taught, guided and grounded me in the Gospel and created a discipline of stillness with the Lord. Teaching Holy Yoga is one of my favorite moments of the week and I’d love to have you come try. See my teaching schedule in the tab above.

3. Lunchables are the secret to grocery shopping with kids.

My greatest #momhack to date. I can get through all of King Soopers with minimal meltdowns by going left not right. I used to go right- straight to the produce and by the time I was to my half-way point, the free orange had been consumed, pieces were strewn around the cart and my daughter decided she no longer wanted to sit. “Me walk now” Yikes! I realized I needed a bigger distraction….how about lunch?

So, one day, I skipped snack, went at 11am when the store is pretty empty, went left and gave both kids a lunchable. If the word lunchable is grossing you out, keep reading! They have the Simple Truth brand so it’s organic.. and I’m known to buy that version when they are on sale. Woot woot. By the time we ended in produce they had a free orange and cookie for dessert. #momwin

4. Vulnerability is not weakness, yet I still argue – if God wanted your heart on your sleeve He would have put it there.

Did I mention I am an enneagram 8. Enough said. Brené Brown is teaching me all about vulnerability and it’s total goodness in all things relationship.

5. Busyness is a state of your schedule, hurry is a state of your soul.

We live in a busy world full of countless demands and so much noise. We can lose our souls amid the chaos and in our busyness we can go days or weeks before we even notice. In motherhood busyness has become an easy trap for me to fall into. In the busyness of driving kids to and from school and activities, the constant cleaning and picking up, making food and cleaning it up just to do it again 3 hours later. I’m trying to be a loving and present wife, mom and also pursue my work and dreams. The lie I’ve come to believe is that busyness = achieving, therefore I feel good and justified in all that I “complete.” But I still never feel like I’ve done enough.

Yet, when I step off the hamster wheel of “doing” and find time to be still I find peace. In stillness, I can hear the Lord and am reminded that I am enough.

He delights in me because I’m His creation not because I achieve for Him.

He wants me to abide in His presence so it is His love that overflows into my life.

Thanks for reading. I’d love to hear what you’ve learned this year. Maybe something similar or totally different? Comment below or send me an email.

19 thoughts on “Top 5 Things I Learned in 2018

  1. I just took in a small sip of your life and it has left me feeling soooo joyful! I love this blog so much Dev, and I absolutely feel Christ in you as I read your words. Can’t wait for more….. so hurry up and write some more please

  2. Beautifully presented, straight forward and inspirational growth!
    You are a beautiful woman, wife, daughter, my daughter in-law and my friend! Your faith grows and you glow more everyday!
    Thank you for sharing and being transparent. You are an inspiration to others’ hearts!
    Love you!

  3. I love reading this and even though I only see you once in awhile I’m always impressed by your transparency! I am also reading Brene Brown and feeling all the feelings! 🙂 Love and miss you friend and can’t wait to hear more!

    1. Missy! I miss you so much my friend. It makes my heart so happy to hear from you. I have so many fond memories learning from you. And yes! Tell me about it with Brene Brown….she continues to rock my socks off. Love that you are reading her too!

  4. Devany, this is wonderful! I am so excited to continue to read 🙂
    Thank you for sharing your journey and all of your gifts with us. It has been such a JOY to get to know you better over the last year.
    And PS we share a middle name AND we spell it the same way!!!

    1. Melissa Anne….no way! I love that you have the “e” too. (It’s the best…not that I’m biased, haha!) I feel the same about you. So happy God has crossed our paths. Thanks for reading!

  5. This is just fantastic and SO needed! Love you and your words so much, Devany! So glad you are sharing this with the world.

  6. Excellent post Dev! Loved reading this and hearing your heart!

    I’m and enneagram 8 too! I’m and really learning and focusing on two things. First, the joy of the present. Living well today. Not just getting to the next dream, rather enjoying the process. Secondly, finding gratitude in all things, not just the obvious things. Being genuinely grateful for the things that seem hard or that I chalk up as part of the grind.
    So much of life depends on our attitude and perspectives and I have a whole lot of control over that!

    1. Kimbo – I had no idea you were an 8 too! I love this because I don’t seem to know many other female 8s. And you said it best – that we can control our attitude and perspectives not our circumstances. It truly is a discipline to continually re-align and re-focus these 2 things. I love your heart friend. Thanks for sharing!!!

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