Where I've Been & Where I'm Going in 2014

2014

I've never really been one for New Years Resolutions.
In fact, I've always been the one who laughs at them and makes comments about how they'll only last a few weeks.

But about a month and a half ago I sat down with my journal and read through a recorded history of my life for the past year. And I realized something needed to change. Drastically. 

Yes, there were some AMAZING moments in 2013. Still, my journals are marked by long periods of silence and no real substance. And while I know that some of it is just the season of life I'm in (and that's okay because I don't NEED the Lord doing drastic and life-changing things constantly to be doing well), much of it is my fault. My lack of discipline and desire to be faithful; my overwhelming desire to just turn off the alarm and sleep an extra hour.

So a month and a half ago, when most people are only concerned with Thanksgiving and Black Friday shopping, I started thinking about what needed to change. Most of the process for me hasn't been just listing out things I want to DO, but thinking about the type of life I want to LIVE... and then going from there. I've made a mission and vision statement for my business, but I realized that I need one for my life, too.

After much thought and prayer, this is my vision for 2014:
In 2014, I want to live a simple and present life for the glory of God. I desire to grow in character and love for the Lord daily, and to be intentional with each moment He's given me to make me more like Himself. I desire to count everything as poop compared to the infinite value of knowing Christ. I desire to follow the Lord, even if it makes me different than everyone else. Especially if it makes me different than everyone else. 

All of my goals for the new year have their roots in this statement. Based on this and what I did well/didn't do well in 2013, this year I'm going to say NO to...

- The temptation to waste too much time on social media.
- Working long hours every day.
- Looking at my phone when someone is talking to me.
- The voice that says "30 more minutes" whenever my alarm goes off.
- Buying things I don't need.
- Reading unprofitable blogs.
- Reading so many blogs I forget who I am.

I'm going to say YES to...

- Living a healthier life: for me, this means more water and exercise.
- Reading through Systematic Theology: Having a good knowledge of God and my faith is really important to me. I grew a LOT in my knowledge of the Lord last year, but I know there are still many things I'm clueless about.
- Reading two books a month: I made a list of the books I want to read each month to help me stay on track this year.
- More intentional time reading the Bible and praying with Lucas.
- A consistent and disciplined personal time of prayer.
- More meaningful time with the Lord and truly KNOWING Him.
- Practicing my craft with more personal projects.
- Investing in Delight.
- United/WPPI: this scares me... which is one reason I know I need to go.
- Work/life boundaries: Mostly through setting a schedule... and then actually sticking to it.
- Giving more consistently and sacrificially.
- Waking up earlier.
- Writing consistently in my journal. I'm one of those people where this is just unexplainably good for my soul.
- Writing notes of encouragement.
- Being intentional about meaningful one-on-one time with friends.
- Being more involved in our local church.
- Learning discipline with time management: through the pomodoro technique and using a planner.
- More breaks throughout the day to clear my head: specifically AWAY from the computer. 
- Teaching others what I know: both on my blog and in person.
- Volunteering.
- Recognizing that the only way I can do any of these things is by God's grace. Not my own strength.

From here, I set daily, monthly, and weekly goals (I'm intense. I know.) that ensure these long-term goals don't get abandon, as well as allow me to live faithfully one day at a time and not worry too much about where I'll be a year from now. For example, thinking about waking up early every day this year is massively overwhelming. But I can wake up early THIS morning. And I'll worry about tomorrow when it gets here. :)

So. This is where I'm at. Brutally honest about where I've been, and excited about where I'm going. I can't wait to see where the Lord takes me in 2014... and even more than that, I can't wait to know Him better and love Him more.

Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:13-14