What I’m most hopeful for in 2023
I found 2021, the pandemic’s second year, awfully disorienting. That year was divided into two parts: life before vaccinations and life after. Even with the vaccinations, I spent much of that year either working or serving my church remotely. Holidays came and went with little mention. Some establishments stayed locked down, some reopened, others landed somewhere in between.
That winter, I felt relieved to get out of the house with an invitation from senior choirmates to perform for my first time with the Reno Philharmonic Chorus. It felt rather daunting since just singing at church Sundays stretched me from my comfort zone. I turned to the Holy Spirit for help, and I loved that by embracing my discomfort, I could encourage others to embrace their insecurities, too. Our show, “Spirit of the Season,” brought this annual tradition back to the masses. I loved how God enabled me to bring hope and joy to so many after so long. Even with us chorus members singing through facemasks, I felt I raised my singing skills to a new level.
I also received that winter an invitation to serve in new church ministries and other volunteer work overseas meant to support people as our world began to emerge further from the pandemic. Accepting the invitations, I recognized too a beauty in our liturgical calendar, with its array of saints’ feast days and celebrations to make most every day special. I decided, based on this newfound appreciation of the ancient calendar, coupled with my love of singing and cemented by my need for consistency, to make rhythm my theme in 2022.
Thus, I spent this year embracing rhythms in their many forms. The church calendar worked wonders for my peace of mind. Meanwhile, I paid closer attention to the beat of certain songs, when to jump in without relying on someone else to show me. As I continued to volunteer throughout 2022, now in person, I have met new people, too. Particular groups that have stood out to me have been social dance groups. In getting to know social dancing, I have gotten to know how unskilled I am in this new aspect of rhythm and its non-vocal elements – it’s a new frontier.
In 2023, I hope to embrace rhythm through a focus on confidence, faith and hope. Social dancing may help with this. It brings me discomfort I feel enthusiastic to overcome. As with all things, I trust God is leading me through this with great plans in mind.