One good thing to do every once in a while is stop and reflect. Reading over the Bible, I have come to see the importance of markers. Guideposts that remind us of key events, where we have come from and what is important.
In Genesis these were literal shrines in the desert to commemorate a key encounter with God or a pivotal moment. They always had a scared name and it was to be a reminder of all who came by what happened there.
In journaling we can do this by simple reflection. Every once in a while, I like to stop and think about where I was a year - 5 - 10 years ago.
I've been reaching out to some old friends, so where I was is at the forefront of my mind.
I took paper from my Joyful Things journal and wrote the intervals I wanted to remember.
Then I went back and filled in the gaps.
Now I am a huge picture-taker. I try to get a photo a day. So I went back into my library to see what I could find. These are shots from three of the moments.
As I sat and thought about these times, I realized they are times of transition and that throughout them God used music to keep me focused. I took out a tag and wrote about this, and added it in the center of my two pages.
Music is another kind of guidepost. I can remember days in Rwanda, sitting on the porch, hands over my ear buds, Sara Groves blasting - a reminder that God was with me and the isolation would not destroy me.
Or in DC when I would stand on the rooftop, look at the Capitol dome and feel God says I was home. During that time was a lot of Bebo Norman and Andrew Peterson music.
Before my wedding, a time of joy and some hurt. The nervousness of joining my life to another, the realization that planning my "big day" did not have to be stressful and it was one day in the course of my life with D. We played JJ Heller's Tonight at our wedding, so she filled that time of anticipation and happiness.
Then last summer, choosing to lay down DC again. Choosing to buy a home with room for D's son and stay in CO a while longer. It was mixed emotion - contentment and a bit of loss. Back to Groves, Heller, and others.
I can mark my journey through music. Songs bring up a time in my life and a moment in time. I will forever associate some music with certain moments.
Guideposts can come in different forms and imprint in our lives differently. But whatever they are - capture them, write them down, remember. Then when things get cloudy, when days are bad, when life feels unaccomplished. Look back on where you've come from and realize how far you are now.
What are some key guideposts in your life?