· · · · ·

5 Things I Learned About God in 2020

We’re here to help you learn and grow, so naturally, we share affiliate links for products that we use and love. When you click on one of these links, we will earn a small amount of money, at no additional cost to you, which we’ll use towards keeping the lights on here! You can read our full disclaimer here.

Listen to the audio on our Podcast | Read time 9-minutes

As we near a new year, naturally it is a time for reflection and collection of memories and lessons learned. This year didn’t allow for quite as many monumental memories, but it certainly stretched us and provided new perspectives on the most important things in life. Today we have an opportunity to also look at some of the things that were revealed about God and His character in this unprecedented year, thanks to Paige Phillips, as part of our “Grow Your Faith” series.

It was December 31, 2019 and I was having a New Year’s party with a group of my friends.  We played board games, ate some appetizers, and made our lists of “goals” for the year.  

I was confident while I wrote my goals that this would be my year.  2020 was going to be the year that big things were going to happen and I was going to get my life on track to prepare for my future.  

I grabbed my notebook paper and pen and began making my list of goals:  

  1. Pay down debt and become more financially stable.  
  2. Get out and explore the world by trying at least one new thing every month.  
  3. Prioritize my mental, physical, and emotional health .  
  4. Read 52 books.   
  5. Grow closer to God.  

I think I am putting it lightly when I say that 2020 hasn’t been the year that I, or anyone else, had originally planned for it to be. 

What a year it has been! For starters, in January we began with:

  • A state of emergency in Australia due to wildfires.  
  • Prince Harry and Meghan Markle renounced their titles.  
  • Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gigi were killed tragically in a helicopter accident.  

As the year progressed:

  • The 2020 Summer Olympics were postponed.  
  • Countries began going into lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
  • A global pandemic was declared.  
  • First responders and essential workers began and continued to arm the front line while COVID-19 took the lives of way too many.  

Throughout this year, life as we knew it began to look a lot different.  Social gatherings were cancelled, grocery stores increased delivery and pick up options, visitors were limited in hospitals and nursing homes, schools switched to remote learning, and spending time with people began to involve a computer screen.  

This isn’t how I imagined my life in 2020, and I am sure the rest of you feel the same.  

Throughout the trials of this year, I have spent a lot of time in God’s Word.  While everything around me may have felt like it was falling apart, I secured my foundation through God’s truth.  While I have learned a lot about the world, myself, and those around me this year, I learned even more about God.

5 things I Learned About God in 2020

God will Provide

“Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear.  For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes.  Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn, yet God feeds them.  And how much more valuable you are than birds!” Luke 12:22-24, NIV

Throughout this year I have clung tight to the truths in these verses.  

My first goal for the year was to pay down debts, but this year has been a financially tough one.  There were times when I wasn’t sure how I was going to make it through the month, let alone pay off debt.  

In my moments of worry, as I tried to make my dollars stretch, I looked back to these verses and remembered that God will always provide.  And each time I was at my minimum, he provided me with relief.  

Friends, this relief was not only financial.  Anytime I was worried, fearful, anxious, angry, or sad, He provided peace.  He will always be there to provide.

God is a Masterful Creator

“In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day.”
Genesis 1:1-5, ESV

My second goal for the year was to get out and explore.  Specifically, I wanted to try at least one new thing every month.  I had so many travel plans laid out.  

In July, I was supposed to spend a week at Young Life camp as a leader, and as soon as I got home, I was supposed to leave for Ethiopia on a mission trip.  I was so excited for the time I was going to spend sharing God’s Word, seeing His creations, and furthering His Kingdom.  

Sadly, both trips were cancelled due to COVID.  

Believe me when I say I was devastated.  

Friends, I had been waiting to go to Ethiopia for three years!  And this would have been my first summer at camp as a Young Life leader.  

Despite my disappointment, I prayed that God would still use me in whatever way He saw fit.  

This time has not been wasted.  

God knew exactly where I needed to be and when I needed to be there.  

He provided opportunity after opportunity to build stronger relationships with so many, Himself included, in the midst of His glorious creation.

What a blessing that has been, despite my upset plans.

God is Unchanging

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” Hebrews 13:8, NIV

I have struggled with worry and anxiety my entire life, and I had been steadily working towards not just living with it, but living in spite of it.  It was time to make my mental, emotional, and physical health a priority.

Needless to say, stepping into a global pandemic in the first part of the year was not the best beginning for my third goal.  

However, as I progressed through the year, even in the midst of all the uncertainty, the chaos, the change, the fear, and the inconsistencies, there was always one unchanging factor, God.  

No matter what is going on in the world around us, our God is never changing.  He is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow.  And we can depend on Him no matter the circumstance.

God Has a Sense of Humor

“To everything, there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.” Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, NIV

God took my desire to read 52 books this year and said, “Oh girl, just you wait!  You are going to have all the time in the world.”  

Not only that, but he has blessed me with the opportunity to work on the leadership team of Intentional Filling.  Through this ministry I can spread His Word to other women of faith through online book studies.  

I love finding these moments where God can make me laugh in the middle of a tough situation.  

God is in Control

“In their hearts, humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.”
Proverbs 16:9, NIV

At the end of last year I set five goals for myself.  I had big plans for what I was going to accomplish and experience.  In the end, I planned my course, but God still established my steps.  

This year may not have turned out exactly as I hoped it would, but I am so thankful for what I have experienced and learned about others, about myself, and most importantly about God.  

Regardless of what I thought I needed and wanted this year, God knew better than I did.

Friends, I know this year has been tough.  It has not been what we all hoped it would be.  

As we reach the end of 2020, I encourage you to stop and think about all that God has done for you this year.  Look back on the times when He stepped in right when we felt like we were falling apart, and the times that we had the chance to slow down and appreciate the smaller things in life.  

Reflect on God’s truths and His promises as we prepare ourselves to celebrate the birth of His Son, Jesus, and make the transition into a new year.  

Merry Christmas, friends! 


5 Things I Learned About God in 2020 - by Paige Phillips | Intentionalfilling.com

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.