January Reflection By Jean Bena

For our Module teens, this month is Movie Night, and I love the film Remember the Ti-tans. The film is about a southern high school football team that successfully desegre-gates and wins the championship during the Civil Rights Movement. There is a biblical verse in the film that I think is inspirational for the new year. The line is from Isaiah 40:30-31 “Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” This verse reminds me of what New Year is all about.
It is that time of the year when everyone makes a resolution only to drop it in two weeks. I still love the excitement, even if it is only for two weeks. I can not say I have kept all my resolutions, but the ones I kept made an impact on my world. For example, quitting smoking. I come from a family of smokers and I, myself smoked for about 20 years. I nev-er thought I could be a non-smoker. I decided one New Year’s Eve, that would be it. I saw an old friend that night who laughed at my electronic cigarette. She used to smoke a lot and told me she read a book and it made her stop. I do not even like to read, but I agreed to try. I bought the book entitled Allan Carr’s Easy Way to Stop Smoking on Martin Luther King Day. As I chain smoked my cigarettes, I read the entire book in one day. That is all it took and when I got to the last page, I stopped. Years have past and still I do not smoke. I thank God and my dear friend regularly for this kept resolution. Becoming a non-smoker taught me that anything is possible especially with the right mindset. The mind is an amazing gift from God.
For me this year, I have many goals and resolutions. I even made a vison board to serve as a daily reminder of what I am working towards. What am I working towards? Well I am getting married in July 2018 and I am so excited. But I want to look as great as I feel. Yes, I am the typical cliché – the person who wants to get in better shape. I am ambitious this year too because I even signed up to complete a 7.1 mile out door run on February 11! As a former smoker with bad knees, I do not really pursue running. However, after I quit, I remember, one time, about 3 years ago running 2 miles. I have started using my elliptical daily to build up my endurance. A couple of days after Christmas, I even went out side to see how far I could run. I shocked myself. In this bitter cold, I was able to run 4.4 miles in 50 minutes. I still have another 3 miles to prepare for, but I feel like I got a good start. My mindset is starting to change. I have faith that God will help me “run and not grow weary.” This run will help to remind me that everything is possible. That is my mantra this year – Everything is possible. I will get in great shape for this wedding and more importantly – for me. I will start with this run and continue to stride for the distance.
In two weeks if you get “tired and weary” remember your faith and trust in our Lord. I wish you all the best in this new year. God Bless.