If you’re reading this, I want to say congratulations for surviving the tumultuous year of 2020. Although last year was very scary, unexpected, and in most parts disappointing, I wanted to reflect on the good moments of 2020 and how God has been moving in my life. Hopefully these moments will provide you with a renewed perspective as you anticipate this new year. Here are the top five blessings of 2020:
- Growth in my faith journey
We all can agree that 2020 was the year from hell. I know that we’ve experienced trying times before, but no one could anticipate such agony on a massive scale. Whether we’ve endured grief from the loss of a loved one, financial hardship, unemployment, or paranoia from catching that debilitating virus, 2020 left most of us feeling jaded and ready for the new year (myself included). Despite all of the horrors of the previous year, I must say that God proved His faithfulness over and over again.
While I battled anxiety and depression (as most of us have), God reminded me that He has a plan for my life and that those plans are “to prosper me and not to harm me, to give me hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11). As you’ll see below, God was walking with me through every hardship that I faced last year. I’m grateful that despite all of the disappointments of 2020, He still showed me that His “faithfulness endures to all generations” (Psalm 100:5).
- Graduating college during the pandemic
If you told me four years ago that I’d be graduating college during a worldwide pandemic, I would’ve laughed at you. Graduating college during a pandemic was not on my agenda for 2020. I anticipated walking across the stage in May, accepting my degree, and sipping a mimosa on Grand Anse Beach in Grenada to celebrate. The beginning of the fall semester was very promising, but by the end of the spring semester, I found myself going to classes virtually. I had to navigate new webcam features on Schoology, remind myself to unmute before participating on Zoom, and get comfortable with speaking to my peers and professors through a computer screen.
Although some classes were more difficult due to remote learning (I’m looking at you Intermediate Microeconomics!), God allowed me to absorb as much as I could, get my assignments submitted on time, and complete the school year while making the Dean’s List a second time. I’m grateful for the education, the friendships, and the experiences that I’ve had at The King’s College. There were many highs and lows, but overall, I valued my life as an undergraduate and I can’t wait to see what God has in store for my future endeavors.
- Fostering greater relationships
One of the benefits of 2020 came in the form of virtual communication. I must admit, it was a bit jarring to see my friends and family via Zoom, but I became more intentional about reaching out to others. Here is a list of moments that helped me create a better bond with my friends and family last year:
-Setting up lunch dates with friends via Zoom
-Joining three new virtual Bible studies which helped me grow closer to God
-Creating a bi-weekly virtual Bible study with my close friends from college
-Rekindling old friendships from high school
-Having Zoom meetings with my cousins on my dad’s side of the family (there are many of us)
-Giving better virtual presentations during my Business Communications and Presentations class
-Writing more letters and sending cards to close friends (a lost art due to technological advances)
This list isn’t exhaustive, but it reflects all of the ways that I’ve been able to bond with others and appreciate the value of community. These moments helped me to engage in vulnerability and made me realize that I didn’t have to be isolated while I was quarantining. Facing 2020 with others was definitely a blessing.
- Gaining new opportunities
Graduating college during a pandemic felt like the worst case scenario for employment opportunities. With many businesses getting closed down or furloughed, I (along with many others), struggled to find a job. Although I didn’t get the opportunities that I wanted, I’m grateful that God opened doors for me. He granted me two new job opportunities (future blog post on that coming soon), allowed me to be a part-time Editor for Iridescent Women, and helped me make new connections for further growth on my writing platform. While the job market looks bleak right now, I thank God that He helped me gain more connections for my prospective career.
- Appreciating my blessings
During quarantine, I became more appreciative of my life and those around me. Being forced to stay at home with nothing to do but binge-watch Netflix and Hulu, I started journaling more. Journaling allowed me to reflect and to document God’s faithfulness last year. It caused me to pause, slow down, and examine my life in a new way (which was impossible with my busy schedule). As I write this article, I’m overwhelmed by all of these blessings. 2020 gave us depressing seasons, but we also have a lot to be thankful for. I pray that 2021 will cause us to continue reflecting on our blessings and the ways that we can bless others.
Here’s to the new year! I pray for more blessings to come.