Welcome 2016.

Arrive. Meet me here. 

The new year quietly + humbly greeted me as the numerals on my phone's clock changed to midnight on December 31. Nothing extravagant, no attendance at a NYC-worthy party. 2016 just kind of approached, knocked on the door and met me like a sweet friend. It was a good arrival.  

I don't think I want to change drastically this new year, I want to become less. 
Not weaker, not smaller, not quieter.

"He must become greater. I must become less."  (John 3:30)

What would happen if I decide to fill my heart by welcoming the new year with humble plans to live more simply and more focused towards God + the Word, and less on worldly things? I've grown tired of spending money on unnecessary physical objects and allowing emotions that constrict + fester from being a worrywart. 

I think I'm going to follow the Contentment Challenge that a very cool lady named Hannah Brencher is doing for three months — her guidelines borrowed from Nancy Ray's original challenge. Basically no shopping except for necessities (like food + thesis materials, in my case) and replacing a reliance on physical things with a reliance on God. In hb's words, I can focus on my heart and mind on the root of true contentment. 

"If I want more God then I must clear the space for him. You need to make room if you want to let God in" (hb). 

I want to clear the clutter and allow a better space for God to meet me where I am. That means, for at least three months, I will try to live more simply. I won't buy a sweater I don't really need. I'll resist going online shopping when I'm bored. I won't impulse buy a new coffee cup because I should be saving money for plans that might come to fruition after I graduate in five months. 

And to fill the lack of new physical things, I'm going to look deeper into the Word. I pray that God will knock on my heart and meet me. Meet with intention. Nurture safety + trust within other humans and form deeper connections through authentic community. Cleanse. Use my hands to make physical things. Use my words + journaling to become more vulnerable. Take a weight off emotionally + physically. Figure out what is important to worry about + what is not. 

I so strongly believe radical things can happen when you make room for God. Your feet can be led to places you never thought you would go, your hands can work with unknown strength, your heart can love even more beautifully than you did before.

I don't need a new sweater or another coffee cup. I need to become less and it's time for me to allow God to become more — the Word, authentic community, less reliance on physical materials — that's my 2016. 

Meet me if you want. Join me. Let's see if we can discover something radical.