What’s New in My New Year

Dear Ones,

I know it’s been a while, a long while, since I’ve shared with you. I am sorry. Members of my family needed me. They come before my writing.

It’s been weeks since we last talked and I’m wondering where to jump in.

In September we welcomed our second grandchild to our family. He is a delight just like his brother. It’s been my delight to help his family find their footing in this new season of life.

I hosted a couple of Christmas parties. This is the second year I hosted one for the women in my small neighborhood. We don’t know each other very well and this party is a great time to build relationships.

The second one was for friends. After planning the party for the neighbors, I thought, I haven’t done anything fun for my friends since I can’t remember when. So I hosted a party for my closest friends who live near me.

We were excited to have all the kids here for over a week for Christmas and a family wedding. December into early January has been full of family and friends. So fun and so exhausting!

Now I am working on retreat material that is due soon.

I love it all. And I can’t do it all. I must decide what I can do and what I can’t do—at least now.

Recently my mentor gave me a new way to gain perspective of what gets the best of me first. She told me to rethink my priorities as things that take precedence in order for me to do the important things God has for me.

Then she said to think of those important things as “the things I don’t blow off in respect to my giftings and where God wants to use me.”

And she said one more thing—Margin needs to be a priority in order for the important to happen.

These three principles are helping me navigate the ever-changing path of my life. God has called me to write. Writing what He puts on my heart is important.

My relationships with my family and friends and taking care of myself in every area are a couple of my priorities. These things fill me up and help me be me.

And then there’s margin. I need it and I know when and how much I need. I can cheat it for a little while, but then I get out of whack—just going through the motions of life, not able to be in the moment, not being creative, losing my joy.

I’m still processing and learning the rhythm in living these three principles.

The thing is—living this way is not congruent with our culture, even the culture of the American church. Living this way is an inside-then-out way of living. Our culture preaches that everything inside must be shared out in public. That doesn’t work for me.

So when you wonder why I haven’t posted in a while, know I am living my priorities and being refreshed in my margin. If you want to see what that looks like, check out my social media (links at top of home page). I share a little of it there.

I pray that in this new year you will join me in arranging your life in a way that helps you be the person God made you to be.


Brenda Garrison is an author and speaker who empowers women with the confidence to live their calling. Brenda is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science Degree in Ministry Leadership with a Concentration in Women’s Ministry at Moody Bible Institute. She and her husband, Gene, are the parents of three young adult daughters and live near Metamora, IL.

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