Top 12 Things I’ve Learned this Winter

Figuratively speaking I’ve lost a lot of brain cells in my 50 something years, so remembering what I need to do is a little harder than it used to be. Thus, I’m a list maker, and I love my lists. Most of my lists are To-Do lists. They are colorful, marked up, handy for getting things done, and they are easily tossed when I’m finished with all the items listed there.

But there’s another kind of list I’ve decided to start making. It’s not a list of things to do. It’s a list of things I’ve learned.  It’s almost like a mini-journal that can become a tiny little testament to what was happening in life from one season to the next.  It’s a keeper because it’s the kind of list that will help me reflect on the past, pull out the important parts, and keep going on to the next thing.

But even more than that, it’s a glory maker.

This kind of list tells of all the little glories, the learning of things, the working through, the walking with Him through the dark when you can’t see the pathway ahead, the changing, the growing, the breathing and the lifting of your foot to take your the step. All that. It brings glory to God.

And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.  2 Corinthians 3:18 (ESV) 

What if we all kept a list of the little glories in our lives? The things we love, the things we’ve learned and the ways God works? That just might be a list that changes things – for me, for you, and maybe even for someone else you know.

I want to be sure you know that I was inspired to create this list of what I’ve learned when I read this post by Emily Freeman. I encourage you to go to her blog. You’ll be inspired! (And she has free list making printables for you!)

So here you go. This is my list.

Top 12 Things I’ve Learned This Winter

About Obedience
  • Obedience is hard. Obedience is frightening. Obedience is a whole lot of uncomfortable things. But if God has called you to do something, He’s going to provide a way for it to happen. If you take the first step, He’ll pick it up from there.
  • God might lead you to do some work in a field you know nothing about. That’s OK, because you’ll learn a whole lot of fascinating things you didn’t know before and you’ll end up with a whole new set of skills you never thought you’d be able to learn!
  • Not having a plan and not knowing the path ahead is extremely uncomfortable. As a matter of fact, you will be so unsure of yourself that you will feel like quitting. But don’t. Because you can depend on God. He’ll give you the knowledge you need just in the nick of time.
  • The bravest thing you’ve ever done might look totally different than you would have ever thought.
  • It’s OK if others don’t understand what you are doing. It’s even OK if you don’t understand everything you are doing. God does. He’ll show you the bigger picture when the time is right.
  • Letting go of your expectations can bring a whole lot of relief.
The bravest thing you’ve ever done might look totally different than you would have ever thought. Click To Tweet


About Writing
  • Just about anything anybody else does seems really easy until you do it yourself – like writing.
  • Writing and sharing it online is terrifying, but you’ll make new friends and some of them live on the other side of the world. : )
  • Being vulnerable and telling the truth about yourself will help someone else. It’s worth every painful minute. Your story matters.
Being vulnerable and telling the truth about yourself will help someone else. It’s worth every painful minute. Your story matters. Click To Tweet


About Family
  • There are lots of Christian kids on campus. As a matter of fact, they attract each other like magnets and they love to hang out together. So don’t worry, Mom. She’ll be able to find her people. : )
  • Families are forever, even when your first one goes to college. Ironically, you might just find your family relationships becoming deeper and richer the further your child goes from home.


  • Sometimes you just have to look past all the things things you don’t understand and trust God anyway.
Sometimes we just have to look past all the things we don’t understand and trust God anyway. Click To Tweet

So there you have it, my winter list. It’s been a real season of learning and trusting. Now it’s time to make a spring season list. Will you join me?



Focus Verses From This Winter 

And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit. 2 Corinthians 3:18 (ESV)

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13 (NKJV)
He brought me out to a spacious place; He rescued me because He delighted in me. Psalm 18:19 (HCSB)

If you click on the Bible verses reference you will be taken to Bible Gateway where you can study the verse further. I encourage you to go there. They have free resources for you to enrich your study. 

Let’s Talk
Would you like to create a little list, too? Maybe you can reflect back on your life over the winter and start working on your own list of things you’ve learned. If you already know something you’ll be putting on that list, it would be fun to share it. Something you write might help someone else! If you want, you can make a comment below!

Let’s Pray
Dear Lord, Thank you for the seasons in our lives and help us to see the growth opportunities hidden in the midst of our day to day activities. Help us to be obedient, even when we don’t understand, even when we can’t see the way ahead. May we always choose to walk with You, following in Your footsteps. In Jesus name, Amen.

Next Week
What does the word perfect really mean according to the Bible?


The post Top 12 Things I’ve Learned this Winter first appeared at Journey to Imperfect.

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26 thoughts on “Top 12 Things I’ve Learned this Winter

  1. I LOVE your list, Leslie! And, it is so wonderful to meet you! Thank you for your sweet encouragement on my blog…it meant so much! The part of your list that resonated most with me right now is the part about sharing and being vulnerable. Oh, my, sometimes the dear Lord asks us to share things about ourselves that are certainly not easy to share or even admit to ourselves, doesn’t He? I think the more we do share our discrepancies and failures and things that are hard to admit and/or share, the closer to Jesus we become. It surely is a humbling process, but He is ever faithful. God bless you, my new friend. 😉

    1. Cheryl, It is so nice to meet you, too! I agree with you that sometimes He calls us to be vulnerable and open up and share difficult things. Many times it’s just to one other trusted person for support, sometimes it is to the person we wronged to ask for forgiveness, sometimes it’s even to open up online for anyone on the internet to see and read. In each situation it is a very difficult thing to do, sometimes even beyond the strength we have on our own, but never beyond the strength God gives. You are right….all that brings us closer to Jesus, and so we thank Him for the difficulties and we keep on taking one step at a time. Thank you for stopping by and for such kind words!

  2. I have been drawn to the world glory a lot lately. Reading about the grace that is present in His glory tuned me into the word, so when you explained how making a list of what you learned is a glory maker, it caught my attention. It is good to keep track of what He is doing, those praises flow more fluently when we don’t force them but choose to remember. This was a good reminder for me to make that process habitual.

    Thanks so much for sharing!

    1. Dawn, I love your comments. I was just thinking as I wrote that list that our everyday life lessons, the things that may seem small and insignificant to anyone but ourselves, those things really, truly are glory makers. Every step we take closer to Him brings him glory. Writing them down so we can see them later and be reminded keeps alive in our hearts the glory of all the ways God is working from day to day. We don’t always see the progress from one day to the next, but after a season of time they become more evident. Blessings!

  3. Leslie,
    I love the list idea. I am a pro at making lists. I love making a list so that I can cross them off as done. I can’t wait to make this new kind of list.

    I make a list every once in awhile about what God has done in my life. I call it my I will remember list.

    Thank you for sharing,


  4. Oh my goodness, Leslie. What a great list. I love the name “glory maker.” Such a great idea, because it challenges us to be present–to have eyes to see God at work. — Looking forward to reading your post on perfection, too. The response that came first to my mind (to your IG post) was “enough.” Not sure if that makes sense to anyone besides me, or not. 🙂 (Not great at feeling I’m enough — therefore the perfectionistic tendencies.) — Thanks for sharing your heart with #ChasingCommunity, Leslie. Lovely getting to know you. ((hug))

  5. Leslie, you and I are neighbors today over at #HeartEncouragement. I just love how you and Crystal had a key verse in your blog post, focusing on Hebrews 12:2. Such great insights and wisdom in this post! Blessings to you!

  6. Keeping a list of little glories is a tangible way to celebrate blessings and victories. I know I need to do more of this. Enjoyed learning from your lessons. And you’re right about the college kids–they will find their people. God has done amazing work in my kids’ spiritual lives in college on state campuses. To Him be all the glory!

  7. You are so right bedience isn’t always easy, and neither is being vulnerable with your life online through writing! I had no idea how challenging it would be until God called me to it!! Blessings, Misty Your neighbor at #MessyMarriage

  8. I love the idea of keeping a list of little glories!
    I make lists, too, so I’m also uncomfortable when I don’t have a plan. Thanks for the reminder that God will give us what we need in just the nick of time.

  9. I agree obedience is hard. I start with the Bible and try to understand God’s will through it. I have a hard time discerning what God wants me to do. Do you? How do we hear from Him about important decisions. The easy things are He does not want us to sin. But which road does he want me to take? What does He want me to do next? Just some thoughts. Thanks for sharing on the #LMMLinkup this week.

    1. Mary, many times, yes, it has been hard for me to know where God is leading. A few times it has been very clear to me. The thing is – God works so differently in each situation and in each individual. I believe He always speaks through His Word and we have to filter every decision through that. I also believe that God leads us to certain paths by planting desires in our hearts. Recently, I felt a strong desire to try to encourage other women in the areas of prayer and overcoming perfectionism. I also began to feel drawn to do that through writing. I believe God placed these desires in my heart to compel me in the direction He wanted me to go. I began to pray deeply about it and also began to really listen and study Bible verses that were in my daily devotions and in other places I was reading. Out of those verses I felt a confirmation about the desires in my heart. In this way I felt I knew where God was leading me. I also would like to say that I believe sometimes there is not just one road to take. There may be several paths ahead of a person that would not go against God (through sin or disobedience) but would be equal paths to serving Him, but each path would lead to serving in different ways. Either path could be taken and God would lead and guide and use that path. And also, I believe it is a rarer thing that God leads us with some type of sudden clear calling. I find that more often it is a gradual thing we grow into that comes gently and involves a lot of waiting. You have really asked some good thought provoking questions here. I appreciate that! I’m always open for discussion. Thanks so much for commenting here today. Blessings!

  10. I love your lessons on obedience. Some days take a lot more bravery than others. Especially in the forgiving and letting go department. It’s a daily process of calling the name of Jesus over all aspects of our situations and circumstances. Still God is good, and still He remains faithful and true.

  11. These are powerful lessons. I’m not sure I can make a list without putting some serious thought into it… I’ve been learning a lot about what it means to be obedient to God. Trusting Him and really living with Him as Lord. I’m still learning and I am so thankful for His patience with me.

    1. Hi Heather! It is a life long journey in learning and thankfully we have a God who is eternally patient! I appreciate you stopping by to read today!

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