Ta-da!!! What do y’all think? Formidable Courage has received a major and much-needed makeover, just in time for 2017. Something this drastic begs an explanation, of course…
In my last post I alluded to 2016 being an exceptionally difficult year. So many things have happened that I didn’t feel comfortable talking about here…which is why I’ve neglected this site. I wrote only 16 posts in 2016, most of them movie and book reviews, and I didn’t keep up very well with my other blogger friends, either.
Granted, that’s partly because I’ve also been insanely busy, but the truth is that I’ve been too discouraged to write much anyway. Except for one post in March, I didn’t even want to write about the presidential election; it was just too stressful, and stirring the pot didn’t seem profitable or edifying. The flood in Louisiana, of course, weighed heavy on everybody; even if your house wasn’t affected, everybody knew somebody who’d lost everything. And finally, I was in what seemed like a promising relationship from April to October, but I refrained from blogging about it until I was sure it would go the distance. It’s a good thing I did, because it blew up in my face without warning and left me deeply hurt, confused, and angry.
I can say in all honesty, though, that the Lord is blessing, healing, soothing, and bringing my shattered pieces into a place of quiet, contented peace. The verse I chose for this year still holds true: “I will be glad and rejoice in your love, for you saw my affliction and knew the anguish of my soul. You have not handed me over to the enemy but have set my feet in a spacious place.” (Psalm 31:7-8) I think I already know what 2017’s verse will be, too:
“Praise our God, O peoples…he has preserved our lives and kept our feet from slipping. For you, O God, tested us; you refined us like silver…You let men ride over our heads; we went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance.” (Psalm 66:8-12)
I want to live in the moment next year. I spent way too much time in 2016 reeling, hiding, seething, and (I’m afraid) crying like a baby. I hope, oh gosh I hope 2017 is easier; but even if it isn’t, I’m praying for the grace to live intentionally and to pursue the gifts and talents God has given me with joy and enthusiasm. And one of those gifts just happens to be this little spot on the Interwebz.
Trekking Through Hobbit Holes describes me way better than Formidable Courage. For one thing, it’s just plain nerdy, and a nod to my two most deeply-loved fandoms. But it also sums me up pretty perfectly. I’m having adventures, my own little treks, in my own simple, happy, hobbity life. To outside observers it may not be the most exciting life, and it may look like I’m wasting myself in ‘this small provincial town’ or that I should be having more Experiences™. But as Ann Voskamp says, “Exhilaration isn’t in experiences themselves, but in exalting Christ Himself, in expending everything for Christ.”
This “small provincial town” is my spacious place. This little hobby farm is my spacious place. My awesome, fun-loving family and my circle of beloved friends, they are my spacious place. And I’m perfectly, incandescently happy about staying here for as long as God wants!
Lord willing, I’m going write about this sort of thing a whole lot more in the coming year, along with quality book and movie reviews, important quotes that I think are worth sharing, the occasional Roll-On-the-Floor-Laughing Posts, and updates on the novel I’m writing! It’s a totally new idea, far superior to the Metamorphosis story I mentioned a few months ago–and I hit the 40,000-word mark this past week after only three months of working on it. I couldn’t be more thrilled!
And yes, I know the web address is still formidablecourage.com–but I just renewed my web domain and changing it right now would be a hassle. The actual name of the blog is what counts 😉
Finally, before I wrap this up for today: I want to extend a thousand-and-one thanks to everybody who’s kept up with my sometimes-consistent, often-sporadic scribblings over the years. Y’all are awesome!