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I'm so glad you are here. I'm Elizabeth and this is the blog. This is the space I tend to. The place I share my heart and our stories. I pack these pages full of tips, stories, adventures, travels, outfits, and recipes. It's a little bit of everything and a whole lot of me. My hope is that these words & photos would encourage & inspire you. That being here will brighten things at least a little bit. Please stick around & explore. There is something here for everyone! Click through the categories below for more! 

2015 Verse of the Year

Every year for New Year, I have this huge pressure to do something big. It is the blog word right, and bloggers make big deals about all kinds of things – especially goals and holidays. So I join along, because I am a perfectionist who doesn’t want to get left behind in this blog eat blog world and I love doing big & cool things so that appear to be big and cool. This year my holidays were super busy and crazy in everyway imaginable (emotionally, physically, spiritually.) I went running into the holiday craving a break and took a whole week off from everything in Florida on a freindcation. Then BAM home for the holidays, all day everyday. I had nothing. Nothing left for the new year and nothing left for a huge spectacular event on the blog.

 

I thought it would be fun to look back and see how the New Year played out the last couple years. Did you know that I have been blogging since 2010? Me either, I always kind of forget my early years because I wasn’t really blogging very often. In my New Year’s Goals for 2011 I was super vague – this is because I had no idea what my life would look like. I also had wonderful phone photography and awkwardly written paragraphs. YAY.  2012 I wanted to make a real list because I knew that is what bloggers did! I was just starting to read other blog and I wanted to figure out how the heck to gain a following. You have to notice the poorly sized instagram photo – with boarders none the less. Yikes.

Then 2013 came and it was my first year as a Mayberry. I had just gotten back from not blogging for like most of 2012 and wanted to jump on the word for the year adventure. I loved that you couldn’t “fail” a new years resolution like that. Hunger was my word for 2014, and while there was nothing wrong with it, I forgot pretty quickly what I was trying to make the year all about. So maybe I really did fail the word of the year challenge – can you do that?

So now it was 2015. I was tired, I was excited but overwhelmed, I was packed with dreams that I felt would never come true, I was weary of doing it all on my own… and that is when it clicked. I can’t do this on my own. None of my past new year’s resolutions failed because they were silly. None of them failed because I shouldn’t have made them or they were not original enough. If they failed (and who says they did) it was because I lost steam trying to do it all alone. I stopped turning to the Lord daily. I stopped looking toward Him for my identity, purpose, desires, dreams, and goals. I let my quest for perfection keep them in my own hands.

 

I am not saying that the years went by wasted (because the Lord is so faithful and I can tell you they did not!) but I am saying that my heart was not ready for this year and I needed to do something different about it. And it is hanging where I can see if everyday so I never forget the work HE is doing.

 

When Jessi of Naptime Diaries approached me with her team’s dream for a Verse of the Year Collection I cried. It was an answer to prayer in the best way. Because 2015 could be our year, or that is, the year I lay my desires for big, bold, huge, perfection in His hands and dream with Him.

 

It wasn’t long before it became all about me again. Pouring over verses to find the perfect one that would be destined to make for a good year. I sent numerous emails to Jessi trying to nail down the best verse for the year. I felt alone, even failed. I had the opportunity to do something signification with Jesus and my blog but I was falling short.

 

The day before New Years, a friend reminded me of a verse in Philippians and it was as if the Lord was saying “this is the verse I have for you.” That verse is the one that you see in these photos. On that giant canvas that is almost as big as me. It was a reminder to let go of that control yet again and a reminder of the promise He has.

 

Because I am not perfect but I sure do desire to be. That longing in my heart for wholeness, for mending, for all the hard work’s end, for completion. That is real and that is something I can hope in. It is not something I can do for myself, it is something that I am part of. Letting the Lord of my life, my Savior and King, continue the work He is doing in me. He started it and He will finish it and that is something I can hold onto.

 

So 2015 is filled with dreams, goals, hopes, and ambitions for sure but it is with the understanding (and daily surrender) that the Lord is the one who is working and He is the one who will finish it in His time.

 

Have you checked out Naptime Diaries before? I highly encourage you to pop by right now!! Do any of the verses in their 2015 Verse of the Year line resonate with you? Grab it now with the code: OAKANDOATSVERSE and get 25% off! (good for the whole store.)Can you relate to any of the crazy thoughts that I have?!? – Please tell me I am not alone! I want to hear from you. Leave a comment below so we can chat! 

  • This is seriously such a beautiful post. The words in your verse are music to my ears. I have found such inspiration in this post 🙂 thank you!

    Carly x

  • Eryn Ivey

    Yes! I feel like M&I are on the verge of something big. something very big. and to be honest, I dont know exactly what that something big is. I feel like God is saying – oh you liked 2014? Well, you've seen nothing yet! (John Ch. 1) I pray desperately everyday that I remember that it is HIS plan. I need to confer with my Jesus for all decisions.

  • Loved these words, but uh, why have you not told me you've discovered Narnia?? 😉 Okay okay, but seriously now…I love this verse (it's one of my favorites, and it was a big verse for me the summer we worked at ELC), and I love how the Lord is using it in your life as you walk boldly into the new year. Thank you for the reminder that Jesus is the one I need to turn to and that his work in me is not yet over. Love you!

  • First, these photos are magical.
    Second, I completely hear you! Our adventures can be exciting and overwhelming. I think it goes back to what you said in your post about how we're all stories in the end. We get too caught up in the pressure around us and forget to focus on our own individual story.

  • That backdrop!!! What a beautiful place to take photos. And this is an amazing verse for the year. Praying that it's your heart's prayer through the entire year!

  • So beautiful, I love your openness and I think more people (I know I can) relate to this verse!

  • Sweet words to my soul!
    I feel like there are SO many things…ALL the things that I want to do….and they fall short. I fall short. But Jesus NEVER falls short!
    LOVE this reminder & your dang perfect photos! 🙂

  • Absolutely! It is so easy to get sidetracked and think of ourself before the Lord, but coming back to Him, recognizing that we are way off is the best, isn't it?! We are a constant work in progress and are never meant to be whole here on this Earth. We won't be whole until we are with Him in His Kingdom. And that is when we will be complete for sure. But striving to better ourselves each day so that we can get there, that is what life is all about. He makes all things new and is doing good things in you always! Beautiful, sister!

  • I just love those pictures of you with that beautiful verse! What a fun, and creative way to welcome in the new year! Good for you! Just stopping by from the Peony Project, and I will be back. 🙂

  • Such a beautiful verse, Elizabeth! It's a great reminder that God is not done with us yet. He won't leave us hanging. He is helping us constantly improve, grow, and change to become more like the people He wants us to be. 🙂

  • what a great promise to build your year upon 🙂

  • Lauren Dalton

    What a great way to start the year off! Your pictures make me miss the snow a little bit since I haven't seen any this year. I hope you feel Him working in your life through the entire year girl!

  • I love this! I had a word last year and found it to be helpful, so I came up with another word this year that is something that I would like to be reminded of throughout the year. I really love this idea of having of a verse for the year. I work at a church and school and we have a theme verse for the school year. It's a verse that's been on my mind all year. (I'm sure it helps that one of our teacher's put it to music and the kids sing it daily.) I can imagine how important and beneficial it would be to have a personal verse for the year.

  • This is so awesome! You are not alone in the striving for big, meaningful, always swinging for the fences perfection. I struggle with it all of the time. I definitely needed to hear this "So 2015 is filled with dreams, goals, hopes, and ambitions for sure but it is with the understanding (and daily surrender) that the Lord is the one who is working and He is the one who will finish it in His time. "
    I have a lot of goals of my own for 2015. I have even blogged about them for extra accountability in my strive to achieve them. But it's all nothing without God. Thanks for the reminder that it is His goals, His kingdom, power, and timing that matter more than our own.

    I will keep you in my prayers and keep following along in all that God has planned to do through you as the story of 2015 unfolds!

  • Amy

    oh beth.
    i love this.
    and this verse is even more beautiful because of the weight God put on your heart with it. it came at the right timing, in the moments where you needed to hear the words most – God is so incredibly personal.
    and i LOVE the design!

  • Amy,
    Thanks sweet friend! He is so faithful. I am definitely walking into this year with a different hope and goal and dream!

  • Thank you so much! I am so glad that you were encouraged (and can relate) to this post!

  • Judith

    I've read so much about finding your "word of the year." That just makes me feel pressured to come up with something so I can check it off my "blogger to do list." I really appreciate the verse of the year. There is nothing quite like memorizing verses to use as Godly armor during the year. I loved the design of the board!

  • I am so glad you felt a little freer to let go this year! You know what, even without a word (or a verse) for your year, God can still do great things!

  • MMM! I love that we can walk this together!

  • I love that! I love having this canvas because it is hanging in my living room where I see it everyday!

  • YAY! Thanks so much. There is nothing like a Colorado Snow!

  • Amen.

  • I know! I love the HOPE filled in these words!

  • Thanks so much! I am so glad you are here!

  • Oh yes! What a hope to hold onto and what new eyes to see the year with!

  • Jenni,
    I am so glad you can relate. Writing words out of my inner heart and sin are so risky. It is hopeful to know I am not alone and beautiful that we get to seek Him together!

  • Thanks Kendra, It is always good to know we are not alone.

  • I know, I love my neighborhood – especially in the snow! I hung it in my living room so that I can see it everyday!

  • Stacia,
    Thanks so much sweet friend. I am glad that you can relate and together we can let Him write our story!

  • Oh yeah, I live in Narnia. Move here.

    Also, thanks so much for your sweet and consistent words of encouragement in my life!

  • It is easy to push that something big with our own power, but rest in Christ this year. I know if you abide in Him that that something big will be something great!

  • YES! and not even on our own power!

  • I love that about blogging! You get a broader picture of God and the family that you are a part of in Him.

  • Yes!

  • I loved this so much Beth! So beautiful and so encouraging! And your pictures are the cutest!

  • Thanks Sam!