I am really struggling to believe that today is the last day of 2017 – this year has flown by! 2017 has been an incredible year for me, and I feel so many personal challenges have been overcome and so many personal achievements have happened. In this post, I thought I would do a round up of some of the highlights of 2017, and also some of my goals and plans for 2018. 2017~ When I think of 2017, I mainly think about the big steps that have been made in my faith. My confidence and courage have taken huge leaps in regard to talking about and sharing my beliefs, and not only has this brought the opportunity to become baptised, which is something I have always wanted to do, but also to be able to witness some of my closest friends make steps in their faith, which gets me beyond excited every time I think about it. I feel my relationship with God has grown so much stronger and more personal, and I feel emotional when I think about how much love I have for Him. Closely linked with becoming stronger in my faith, is the confidence I have developed, both within myself, and when talking to others. I used to feel incredibly insecure and really struggled when talking to people who I wasn’t close with as I would feel judged and anxious about what they were thinking about me. This year however, I have began to develop much more confidence, and in times of self-doubt I am able to remember the Lord’s love for me, and therefore can remind myself how when I have the Creator’s love, no other opinion really matters. There have been other achievements, which although important, have had nowhere near the same amount of impact on me. This year I sat my first set of school exams, and came out with results I was proud of. I also achieved a young leadership award within girl guiding, which I have been working towards for a while. Obviously, something very exciting to have happened this year was the beginning of this blog, which has already brought me so many friendships and opportunities. I am so excited to see where this blog goes in 2018! All in all, 2017 has been a year of learning, experiencing, and growth. Though some times have been hard, I honestly would not change it for the world, and the person I am now is very different to who I was at the beginning of this year (in a positive way!) 2018~ In 2018, I would love to grow even more in my faith and confidence. I want to put God first, rather than prioritising things like Netflix, or others opinions, as I am so guilty of doing at the moment. If you are a christian, I would love if you could pray for a continued growth within my relationship with God. I want my life to be one in which anyone can look at and see His work through it. I think part of this will be making sure I am reading his Word everyday, and spending more time in prayer, as we all know communication is a huge part of any relationship! Also in 2018, I would love to spend more time working on my health and fitness, as well as my self-confidence in regards to my body. One of the things I am still quite insecure about is my weight, and how my body looks. It is rare for me to feel confident or happy with how an outfit looks on me, and also I often feel embarrassed about how easily I can run out of breath or become tired while exercising, and my current diet is really not very beneficial for me. So this year, I would really like to not only accept my body more, but also work on improving my fitness and eating habits. One of my favourite hobbies used to be reading, but as my life has become more and more busy, my time spent reading has slowly dwindled. I really miss the days when I would go through a book a day, but realistically I don’t have the time to spend reading that much a day (unless I only read young children’s picture books!), so I would love to at least be reading a few books each month! Also, if you have any suggestions of books I should aim to read this year then let me know. Academically, my main aim is to work hard. Last year, I was lucky in that I didn’t find much of the work too difficult, and I feel I got away with doing not too much work in order to get good results. This year however, the work is much harder and I want to put in the work, mainly so I can feel that whatever results I do get were earned, rather than given by chance. I am obviously incredibly grateful that I did not have much struggle with last years exams, but it did leave me feeling slightly undeserving of the results I got as I know many people who worked much harder than me did not get the same. Also in 2018, I really want to start doing more charity work. Last year, I have done bits and pieces, but I feel I could be doing so much more. I am so incredibly blessed to be in a situation when I am financially comfortable, with a good education and with many opportunities, and recently God has been opening my mind and breaking my heart to all of the injustice in this world, and all the people who are not as lucky as me. I would love for this year to be a year where I can use my fortunate situation to help make a difference to those in unfortunate situations, and a year where I can put others needs before my selfish wants. Finally, 2018 is a year where I really want to work on and grow my blog. I want it to be a place where I can be honest, genuine and hopefully helpful. I really want to use it to talk a lot about my faith, and my God, and to be able to share his incredible work in not only my life, but also the lives of others. I would love to make more friendships in this amazing blogging world, and to be able to have my words reach more people. Goodbye 2017, you have been incredible and I will forever be grateful for all you have brought me. Hello 2018, I pray you will be just as eye-opening and impactful.