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january 2020


It’s rainy season in Malawi. As I sit here, looking out at the quiet morning showers as they wash the lush, thick grasses, heavy hanging trees, and cactus plants in their soft dew-like downfall – nature enclosing me as though I were snuggled up safely in a canopy of green – I find my inner self settling down into a calm, stable feeling of peace.

It is January. The first month of a new year. The first month of a new decade. And I feel that I am a little behind in the revelry of all this newness; you’ll have to forgive me. I think the slowness of the African pace has made a big impact on me. I am moving more slowly, too.

Or, maybe not.

I think a better word might be intentional. I’m not moving slowly simply for the sake of moving slow, but I’m moving slowly because I am learning to be more intentional with my time, my words, and my actions. Africa helps me to remain intentional. Africa moves to the rhythm of its own drum. It beats in tandem with the ebb and flow of nature. It works within the context of its environment. So often, in my American ways, I try to make my environment bend to my expectations, my plans, and my organized strategy. But Africa moves alongside its environment. Dry seasons and rainy seasons depend upon the other, and the African depends upon those seasons. Fruits and vegetables are produced in season, not produced on demand. Life works within the context of its environment, not the other way around.

Over the past four months, I have been challenged to be more intentional. Not by any person or event, but Africa itself has laid out this challenge for me.

One way I am striving to be more intentional is how I invest in this blog. Since I started blogging over ten years ago, my main intention was to have a place to practice writing. I needed some incentive to write semi-regularly, to record my thoughts, journal my parenting journey, and find my voice as a writer. I have had seasons where I posted weekly, bi-monthly, and annually – sometimes more, sometimes less. I want that to change. While the sporadic nature of posting has kept me from feeling constrained and pigeon-holed into a commitment that I feared I may not be able to fulfill, I am realizing that without intentionality, this blog will remain stagnant, stifled, and impeded in the growth that could be its potential. Therefore, I have decided to begin this new decade with the commitment to be intentional with the regularity of my posting, and even in its content.

For those of you who try to follow along on this journey with me, I am deeply grateful. Even miles apart we are linked, arm-in-arm, through the highs and lows of life. This post is specifically for you. I wanted you to know my intentions with this blog, and even ask for a little accountability.

Here is my “strategy towards intentionality”:

  • Each year will have a specific word or theme.
  • Each post will be reflective of/inspired by that word.
  • For the year 2020, I will post once a month, on the last Friday of the month.

It is not mind-blowing or earth shattering, but it will be consistent and intentional. Each post will come from a place where, I believe, God wants to work in my life…and I will share that with you.

This month I will actually be posting twice as I wanted to communicate my plan first, and then, on the last Friday of the month, I will post the first installment of this year’s posts.

As I wrap up this “letter” to you, and as the warm African sun is gently pushing away the slow morning rains, I will leave you with my word for the year. I hope you will stick with me on this journey.

REMAIN –def. to stay; to continue; to fulfill.

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4 Responses to “january 2020”

  1. Joy Wilson says:

    I always look forward to reading your blog. You have a beautiful way of putting into words your journey.

  2. Amy says:

    Thank you, Joy! That means a lot to me. :)

  3. Jan Waddell says:

    I understand the need to be intentional, as I retired at the beginning of January. I have found that if I am not intenional in setting up a schedule, nothing gets done! I can say, “I need to go to the grocery store tomorrow “, but if I am not intentional in doing so, I put it off until the next day, and the next, until I absolutely can’t put it off anymore! Hugs to you, Amy – I always enjoy your blog and look forward to your next installment!

  4. Janna C. says:

    John 15:4 “Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.”

    I love your ”theme” and I love you, friend! Looking forward to reading what God is doing in and through you this new year!

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