Our family loaded up the van and disappeared at Lost Pines with three other families. I didn’t turn on my computer for two days. I think I needed that separation. I have begun to wonder if the mole is a USB port developing at my neck.
Rather than logging onto my blog, my early mornings were spent walking through the woods with friends along the Colorado River in chilly morning air slogging through muddy paths. Nature and friendship: maybe two of the most vital, invigorating refreshers for my overworked post Christmas slump.
Now we are home and the Anthis family is here for the New Year’s. There are ten kids at our house and together we are looking forward to feeling 2011 slip out of our fingers while grasping the New Year into our clutch. I adore the energy that pops from a group of teens and tweenies. We are going to have some fun.
Welcoming the New Year for me means I have some inner dialog about last year and how it might influence the improvements I hope to have for the next year. I am one to carefully contemplate the emergence of a fresh start, a renewal, a refresher for all of the ways I conduct my life. I feel like I am shedding skin and the new look is shiny, vibrant and soft. I understand the world, or at least America, is ready to start a diet on Sunday and hit the gym on Monday, but I’m thinking about some other personal goals, more than how my derriere is looking in my jeans (ok, maybe that too).
Here’s the short list:
- Keep my office tidy and organized
- Take a date with Kira for her education once a week
- Conquer the forearm stand in yoga class, gracefully
- Accomplish a solid canter on Gunner, the horse I am leasing
- Establish the new orphanage in Uganda
- Plan the summer mission trip
- Write the memoir
- Go deep into a bible study that manifests in action, not just knowledge
- Make more photo books
- Have more one on one time with each of the boys
- Protect and continue with the date I have with Craig every weekend
- Get back on my bike
- Schedule my time carefully
The goals I have for this year won’t ever be realized if I don’t zip up some discipline all around. The first goal I will approach are Spiritual Disciplines. While walking with the girls we talked about a book, Celebration of Disciplines. Christie has been leading a group of women through this book in rich depth. First they went through the whole book, and then went back to each chapter to dissect it and then spend three weeks practicing it, all the while discussing their individual and collective discoveries. She says it is changing their lives in significant ways. This is going to be where I begin. I’m going to give 2012 to the challenges given in this book.
Celebration of Disciplines was written by Richard Foster, and it is divided into three parts:
- The Inward disciplines: meditation, prayer, fasting , study
- The Outward Dsiciplines: simplicity, solitude, submission, service
- The Corporate Disciplines: confession, worship, guidance, celebration
You might be scratching your head or chuckling at my ambitions for this year, I know that’s my husband’s reactions to me, but here’s the simple process I will follow. If I can hone in on the spiritual disciplines, they will drive and guide the big goals I have for myself. And the ones that aren’t worth my time and effort will be discarded as I draw closer to God in prayer and study. Maybe some of the goals will take longer than the 365 days in 2012, and that’s ok as long as I don’t give up! It is critical when we make goals that we test our inner resolve to reach them. I wouldn’t want to set myself up for defeat and disappointment by making goals I don’t honestly feel driven to obtain. Perhaps we all ought to be careful about the goals we choose and make sure we are motivated and tenacious at reaching them.
One thing I am going to do is write down these goals as a reminder to myself, and then put the list on the top of the box when I pack away Christmas. This way next year when I pull down the Christmas boxes I will find my list of goals and see if I honored them. I hope I do. What are your goals? Maybe if you share yours I will be inspired to add to my list!