The Year Of Adventure And What God Taught Me In 2018

by | Jan 5, 2019 | #adventure2018

Adventure.

That was my word for 2018. Let me tell you, it was quite appropriate. My life is a grand adventure with God, as He leads me through unfamiliar paths and often out of my comfort zone. He’s taken me to amazing places and has helped me experience more than I could have ever dreamed of.

Some days I follow well and on other days, well, I stray. I get distracted. My gaze turns to the shiny things of this world instead of on my Guide of this adventure. I’m thankful He loves me enough to continue to gently turn my face toward Him, as well as forgive me when I stray.

But, most days I find myself clinging to Him for dear life in this adventure. Yes, that was me in 2018.

Through it all, however, He has taught me much.

The year of Adventure and what God taught me in 2018

I’m not in control.

In the wee-hours of April 3, I woke to the symptoms of a heart attack. Thankfully, the E.R. doc said otherwise, but this led to months of medical tests, scans, and procedures. This girl likes to be in control, but once again, God reminded me I wasn’t. I couldn’t control anything… my heart, nor the test results. Only God could. As I was forced to rest in His sovereignty, I found a peace that surpassed my understanding.

Bloom where I’m planted.

God prompted me to continue the local bi-monthly events I began from His nudging in December 2017 called, Bring Your Own Bible and Beverage (BYOB and B). Designed just for women, we held six events in 2018, and each one grew in impact and in physical numbers. So much so, we had to move to a larger venue. God planted me here and I’m to bloom right where He has me. The grass is always greener in the center of His will, isn’t it?

BYOB and B

God is good at making dreams come true.

God is the giver of all good gifts, and He knows the desires of our hearts. All year long we planned and prepared and planned some more for our daughter’s wedding that took place on a beautiful, sunshiny day in October. We saw God in every detail of her dream-come-true kind of day. In everything from the weather, to our son standing up as a groomsman after having an appendicitis three days before the wedding, to the peace and calmness and beauty that filled the entire day. Our daughter married the man of her dreams, and Bill and I have another amazing son. God is very good at making dreams come true.

Life is precious. Don’t take one moment of it for granted.

I don’t mean to, but I can take life for granted. I can get caught up in the ho-hum, hum-drum of every day life and forget how special each moment of it is. Until God uses something to wake me up. Like a cardiac ablation mid-November. Having no control, God taught me to trust Him to bring me out of the procedure safely and to bring good from it. It was a frightening experience, but one in where I knew my Guide was with me. I’m still healing and have had some bumps in the road, but I have a new appreciation for each moment I’m given on this earth.

After a heart procedure, I'm thankful.

Be open.

Bill and I ventured out often on our tandem bicycle in 2018. Not only were we out on familiar trails and roads, but we explored new areas in Iowa, Missouri, and Wisconsin. We rode in our fifth RAGBRAI and were caught in a scary storm mid-week that broke our trusty tent (while we were attempting to sleep in it). When all I wanted to do was panic in those moments, God asked me to remain open to the adventure. To not focus at what I saw, but to be open to what I couldn’t see. That’s something daily I continue to apply.

RAGBRAI

Brokenness may feel unbearable for a time, but God uses it for His glory, for our growth, and for the good of others.

The subject of our October Bring Your Own Bible and Beverage event was “Beyond Brokenness.” I spent hours preparing for it, pondering how to make it a transforming event for those in attendance. Little did I know my preparation would open the door for God to transform me that evening–and beyond. God lead me to face my brokenness, my struggles, my faults and yes, my failures. It’s been trying and challenging to face these, but I’m beginning to catch a glimpse of how God is using it all for His glory, for my growth, and for the good of others around me.

50 is amazing!

Yes, I turned 50 just a little over a week ago. 50. How can that even be? I’ll share more in a future post, but friend, 50 is just plain crazy. It’s also just a number, right? My pastor, who is my age minus a few months, reminded me this week that “I’m at the top of my game!” Okay, if he says so. God isn’t done with me yet, and in this year of 50, I trust Him that it’s going to be amazing! So far, that’s been the case.

50 is amazing!

Friend, what did God teach you in 2018?

I’d love to read any lessons you’ve learned along the journey last year. I’m thankful God doesn’t leave us where we are. He loves us too much to do so.

Thanks for journeying with me this year. Praying your 2019 is filled with His goodness, His love, and His presence in your life!

Much love,

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10 Comments

  1. Patty

    What an incredible journey! Love hearing how God is working in your life and always enjoy your writing. Only wish I lived close enough to attend BYOB & B. Love you.

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      Patty, it was so great to catch up with you the other evening. I, too, wish we lived closer. Maybe this will be the year Bill and I take our tandem out your way! I’m grateful for you and your friendship all these years! Much love to you today and always.

      Reply
  2. Kim

    Hi Julie,

    Reading about your year of Adventure, challenges and blessings both, makes me think of Fullfillment and Abundance. “Adventure”, gives the initial appearance of “yipee”, when really it can include “You need to hold on now, but it’s going to be really good in the end”.

    I’ve been sort of holding my 2019 word, Treasure, rather loosely for this very reason. Which side of Treasure will I be experiencing in the coming year? There is a sliver of fear that comes with this word but I am trying hard to focus on the greater positives that treasuring family, friends, health… offers.

    I will keep this post, Adventure, Fullfillment and Abundance in mind, along with my word Treasure.

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      Kim, I love the word Treasure, but I totally get what you’re saying here. That was my thought when Adventure became my word. I wondered how the hard side of Adventure might play out throughout my year, along with the pleasant side. My year was a mixture of both… probably with any year. We have both the good and the bad in life, but God uses it all for His glory, for our growth, and for good. I’m praying for you today in your word. Please keep me posted on how it goes! Thanks so much for sharing it with me. Bless you, friend!

      Reply
  3. Tara

    You had an adventurous year my friend! I turned 40 in September so we are exactly one decade a part. Loved this post friend!

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      I love this, Tara! One decade a part. Thanks for sharing in my recap. Hope your 2019 is off to an amazing start!

      Reply
  4. Cindy

    Julie and Tara, I turn 60 in March!!! Whaaaat? I don’t know what to do with that! I love tho, that this place brings women of three different decades together!

    2018 has been a blessed year but also a year of inward churning. I feel somewhat off balanced, wandering, searching……I pray to take all I’m learning and discover what God would like for me to do. I really thought a 59 3/4 year old would have more answers than questions, but nope! I’m not completely sure yet, but my word for 2019 may be pursue……I might add bravely pursue because I am far from a courageous gal and pursuing God’s will and my dreams will require a lot! Happy, Happy New Year you young chicks! Cindy

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      Cindy, I love your word! I see you as bravely courageous with God leading you every step of the way. On our own we are far from courageous, but with Him, we have all we need to bravely pursue! I look forward to seeing how God uses this word in you life this year, Cindy. One thing I’m realizing is age is just a number. So glad we can journey together, no matter how old we are! Love you, friend!

      Reply
  5. Wendy

    Julie, I found your blog on Pinterest and can’t wait to explore more! My family is doing our first RAGBRAI this July. 🙂

    Reply
    • Julie Lefebure

      How exciting! We’ve created so many wonderful memories on RAGBRAI. I hope you love it! Are you going with a group or club or by yourselves as a family? Keep me posted on how you’re preparing and training. So fun!

      Reply

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  1. 2019 And - Julie Lefebure - […] reminded how last year’s word, ADVENTURE, was amazingly appropriate. I wrote about it here two weeks ago. So, consequently,…

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