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2010 in review

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Do you ever have one of those days when you’re brushing your teeth at the end of it all, thinking about how fast it went, and you suddenly realize how much a person can do in a single day? Well, I’ve just had one of those years. On the one hand, it went remarkably fast and on the other hand, so much happened on both the interior and exterior of my life that it’s remarkable to think that only a year passed. One year — and a lifetime. Here are a few of the highlights.

Best movie of 2010

I recently read a movie critic’s list of 2010’s top ten movies and I must admit, several of his picks were films I haven’t even heard of. So, from my limited viewing experience, I bring you what I believe are two of the year’s best movies from two completely separate genres.

Inception

Undoubtedly the best—most original—film to come out of Hollywood in quite some time, Inception made the top of my 2010 movie list months before the year was over. I’m not typically a nail-bitter, but halfway through the film, I suddenly realized the tips of my fingers were in my mouth. I won’t say too much for fear of spoiling anything for those who may have not seen it yet. (Seriously, remedy that ASAP!) But I will say that it’s not an easy task to write a movie based entirely on a reality you will have to help your audience understand and believe. Inception does this seamlessly, all while weaving a multi-layered story and delivering a frustratingly brilliant ending.

Toy Story 3

I honestly didn’t expect much from this movie. Typically, when you get to the third of anything, you’ve basically compromised quality and storyline for a name that people feel some sort of allegiance to or affection for. But Toy Story was by far the exception to the rule. Based on the opening scene alone, I think this movie did a better job capturing a child’s imagination than the first two Toy Stories combined. It’s definitely my favorite of the trilogy.

Best books I read in 2010

I thought I knew what my favorite books of 2010 were, and then I started looking over my reading notes from the year and became more conflicted. So, at the risk of leaving some wonderful, well-deserving titles out, I’ve boiled it down to two books from vastly different categories.

To Kill a Mockingbird

Harper Lee’s classic novel was one of those books that I’d always felt as if I should have read, but just hadn’t. When I finally picked it up along with my book club ladies, I literally didn’t want to put it down. It’s a well-written, fascinating story that quickly captures your attention and manages to deal with difficult themes and serious issues without compromising the free-spirited, lighthearted narration. And in the end, I think it poses several pertinent questions about human nature.

Forgotten God

This book completely challenged the way I think about the Holy Spirit and forced me to question the strength of my own faith. It’s a vivid—and apt—reminder of power we have in us a Christians, delivered by Francis Chan, a wonderful communicator.

Lessons from 2010

A year ago, when I reflected on 2009, I talked about uncertainty, my desire for control, and the need to trust God with the details of my life. Looking back on 2010, I’m so thankful to see that he didn’t leave me off the hook—he continued to prod me to give up control of my life and gently reminded me just how little I do have control over. I’m still a work in progress, but one thing God showed me this year is that allowing him to change our hearts is indeed a slow process.

This year, I started surrendering my battle for perfection. God is still teaching me how—and that it’s okay—to let go, but what I’m finding as I do is a great deal of freedom and joy. And it gives me hope and excitement for the future because it means that as I let go of my attempts at perfection I leave room for God to do more in and through me.

Over the past year, I also watched many of my friends go through unprecedented trials and learned first-hand how God uses suffering. Through it all, I’ve realized that God has a way of giving us exactly what we need for the moment. The year’s unexpected turns have shown me that, no matter what happens, God will make sure we have the patience, grace, and strength to deal with it. And that too, excites me for the future, because it means there’s potential for me to do things that are bigger than myself. I don’t have to stick with just dreams I know I can accomplish, because I have the power of the Holy Spirit—a power that can help me accomplish anything God calls me to. And, I don’t have to worry, because God knows what I’ll be facing, and even if it’s not easy, he’s going to prepare me to deal with it.

None of this is new to me intellectually. I could have told you this a year ago, but now I know it on a deeper level. My heart is more convinced of it, and I understand exactly what it means on a personal level. I’m grateful that God lets us learn, and I pray that my heart would continue to be receptive.

And just for fun, completely trivial things that changed my life in 2010

  • Pandora (I discovered this before 2010, but it continues to change my life, so it still counts)
  • Netflix
  • Frozen grapes (don’t comment until you’ve tried them)
  • Adidas Sequence running shoes
  • This American Life
  • Portland (this city will never stop changing my life)
  • Short hair
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Written by liferenewed

December 31, 2010 at 6:07 am

Posted in Books, Life lessons, Movies

One Response

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  1. Here is to increased “Discovery” to 2011!

    Totally agree on the movies of the year btw…

    David

    David Wilcox

    January 10, 2011 at 8:59 pm


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