I don’t know where I started living disappointed.

It may have been after college when I expected student loans not to be a burden, but the reality was they were.

It may have been after I got married and expected to buy a home to raise a family, but the reality was we were living in the retired church secretary’s spare bedroom.

It may have been after I had two babies under the age of two, and I expected to be happy and feel fulfilled, but the reality was it was really hard.

It may have been after I decided to be a stay-at-home mom and expected that we could live like a dual-income household, but the reality was we were a single-income home.

Looking back at most of my adult life, I lived disappointed, and while I cannot pinpoint the start of that way of thinking and feeling, I remember the exact words spoken that enlightened me to my disappointment:

The space between expectation and reality is disappointment.” – Marcus Mecum

I realized I could choose to continue living my life striving, reaching, and perfecting, blaming everyone and everything outside my control on why life wasn’t living up to my expectations, or I could accept my reality.

There are benefits to being grounded, feet touching the floor of reality. It’s here you can:

  • Plant new seeds. Start new projects. Pray new prayers—dream new dreams.
  • Hop, skip, and jump. Unlike floating around in space, which is not natural to our physical being, having two feet on the ground to catapult movement is only accomplished from a firm foundation.
  • Rest. On solid ground is where your body can lie still to rest.

In 2020 all expectations came crashing down, and all that remained was reality, and we literally had to live in it. Quarantined, in our homes, face-to-face with it. And it wasn’t easy.

Then 2021 came knocking, and the expectation was that a switch would flip and the challenges of 2020 would all disappear, but nothing changed overnight.

Within the first few days of the new year, I read the word, nest, and I felt something in my spirit. I looked up every Bible verse with that word, and here’s what stood out to me:

The birds build nests near the tranquil streams, chirping their joyous songs from the branches above.” Psalms 104:12 TPT

Here’s what I gleaned from this verse and what I’m holding onto this year as my reality:

  • The Lord has created a perfect home for every creature, including me. Even though I expected that (by almost 40) I’d own my dream home, the reality is I am where I am, and I can create a peaceful atmosphere in the home we live and love in.
  • Tranquil streams are calm. Unlike rushing rapids, these still waters reflect objects clearly, like a mirror. I have spent the last decade striving to accomplish the expectations of myself and living to meet the expectations that others have of me, and somewhere along the way, I lost the vision of who I am and was created to be. This is a year of reflection to identify who I truly am and walk boldly in it.
  • Joy flows from reality. The place where we birth new creation, create activity, and rest is also where peace and joy flow from.

Continue to dream and envision great things! You are designed to be a dreamer. When disappointment creeps in, take a moment to feel the ground beneath your feet and take a moment to come to terms with your reality because from that place is where you can start creating the life you love.