What did 2018 teach me?

Last year is probably one of the densest years that I’ve been through. It feels like there were a lot of things that happened, compared to the previous years.

It’s the year when I started my masters degree, was in a trauma for months, yet also was in a healing process, got accepted for a scholarship program after failing it in the previous year, attended Victory Katips and met my new family (victory group mates), volunteered in a ministry, was able to travel to more places, and lastly, I met a lot of new people.

More than these physical experiences, there’s nothing more denser in the heart than having to feel a couple of emotions at the same time. I can actually say that 2018 is a very stressful year for me. I had a constant battle with being sad and feeling depressed. I know that God is the source of life yet sometimes, reading the Bible just gets boring and tiring.

And I thank God for all of these because everything is permissible yet not everything is beneficial (1 Cor. 10:23), and not be beneficial in terms of our interpretation of the circumstance, but everything has a purpose (Prov. 16:4).

Aside from the inner struggle, there was also a burden for me about having to engage with new people. Honestly, I love having new friends or just conversing with old pals, hear new stories, and witness the greatness of God in other people.

Yet the sometimes, nodding is easier to do than listening.

It can really be draining. And maybe that’s what’s wrong with me because it’s hard for me to keep a relationship that strong and intimate, especially when we do not even see each other often times.

I value relationships but I just don’t have the strength to cultivate and grow it.

I’ve always wondered how to be like Jesus who were able to endure everything here on earth. How can He be compassionate about engaging and teaching people, who are very problematic, the truth that gives life. How can He still walk, and talk, and not really letting the tiredness stop Him from reaching out to the lost.

I prayed and prayed.


Once when we were having a small group (VG) discussion during the first quarter of 2018, we were talking about how we can share and demonstrate the gospel to our friends and family. Then our VG leader told us

“Let’s be intentional. That’s the word. Be intentional into sharing the love that we have received.”

And I’ve been hearing that word a lot of times since then. I know that’s what I really needed. That was God speaking to me directly .

I realized that sometimes, we just take for the granted the 24/7 availability of God to hear us. We lose track, we forget to ask the Holy Spirit to minister to us, and we sometimes read the Bible just for the sake of opening the book and reading a few verses that we do not even understand, and we thought it was okay.

Familiarity is really deadly.

It’s the lie of the enemy that’s trying to tell us that we don’t have to read this certain passage anymore. That we don’t have to come to God because surely He will deliver us. That it’s okay not to pray because He already knows.

And with that, we tend to just live the same, the cyclic system just like how this world rotates and revolves. And we’ll stay under the manipulative work of mankind, just to breathe and survive.

Which is really wrong.

God wants us to be intentional in growing our relationship with Him. To be intentional in talking to Him because of our love for Him, because He first loved us. God wants our hearts.

He wants your heart.

This process of drawing to God more leads us to drawing closer to people also. Because being intimate with God syncs our heart’s beat into His, and we’ll know that His heart is also for our families, friends, for the lost.

And it’s not a sudden change. It’s a process. And God is willing to wait to for you, for us. Let’s give ourselves time to learn, read, and speak life. Let’s try to live out Jesus in us. To act with humility and gentleness (Colossians 3:12), to be mindful about others, to speak gracious words like honeycomb that is sweet to the soul (Proverbs 16:24).

Let’s live out 2019 with more of God and more of people kind of life. Yes, it will be hard but God’s grace gives strength and makes us able.

God and peopleGod and people.

Happy new year everyone! May you see and taste the goodness of our Lord throughout the year 2019. ❤

Btw, what’s your word of the year for 2018? You can share it below. 😉

10 thoughts on “What did 2018 teach me?”

  1. Thoughtful words from one so young Hanna.
    Going into 2019 many voices are declaring great breakthroughs for the body of Messiah. I, for one, am looking forward to that. At age 80 I am like Caleb…still strong and vigorous, ready to take my “mountain” 🙏🏼 Lord willing.

    God bless you Hanna as you press in to “know as you are known”.



    1. Wow. I am so overwhelmed by this comment. The glory is to God alone. Thank you for taking the time to read and it is my joy to hear those words coming from somebody who has already gone through a long journey and a lot of trials. I trust that you’ll have the strength and power as you go on serving God with your life.

      God bless you immensely. Let’s keep taking part in the mission that God has in this world.


  2. Such a good post Hanna, thank you for your transparency. I was pleasantly surprised to read about another follower of Jesus who also struggled with depression in 2018. Let’s me know I am not alone, 1Peter 5:9 just came alive for me as I typed this message out! God is So Good!! Thank you again! “Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are” 1Peter 5:9


    1. Thank you for making the time to read! Maybe my depression isn’t that worse but I felt depressed and really sad from time to time about some stuff that don’t even really matter at all. Thank you for that verse. You are not alone and will never be alone. We are all in this together as we form the body of Christ. God bless you Cynthia. 💜


    2. Amen! I experienced that as well last year but it was from grieving over my late sister (1.5 years apart). It was through that experience that I knew that even those within the body of Christ can get depressed. However, The Lord is always there through it all!
      Blessings to you as well!

      Liked by 1 person

    3. I’m sorry to hear about your sister. I know she’s already on the best place one can be. I can totally relate with the pain of losing someone but I hope that at times when we remember the pain and feel it again, we’ll never lose the joy with the truth that we’ll be meeting them someday and be with them and Jesus forever! I hope you well.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Nice intentional is a great word for the year! Mine is focus which sort of ties with that as well. I can’t lose heart and focus on what God has called me to do. I’ve learned lately keeping a strong positive attitude is crucial in the midst of adversity and negative voices around us. I’m glad I stumbled on your blog and look forward to more posts! God bless you! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love this! Just discovered your blog after you commented on my post. As you can see, I can relate to 2018 being a difficult year, but praise God for how evident it is that not only did He do a new work in my life, but my sister, He did a work in yours as well! I agree with your end declaration over 2019 “Let’s live out 2019 with more of God and more of people kind of life.” Amen!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you dear. I am excited to read your posts this year, and to witness too what God has in store for you with what you share with us. God bless you. 💜

      Liked by 1 person

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