In previous years I have tried to create goals at the beginning of each new year. However, I have often had trouble following through on these goals over the duration of the year because they have either been too complicated and/or I have had too many. Moreover, once I have fallen off track for a few days or a week I have tended to give up on them. Thus, this year I am trying to simplify what I hope to do in 2018 in an effort to be more consistent in what I hope to do. However, this year I am integrating Spanish into some of what I hope to do.
Verse of the year: “Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.” (Ephesians 5:15-16)
Versículo del año: “Por tanto, tengan cuidado cómo andan; no como insensatos sino como sabios, aprovechando bien el tiempo, porque los días son malos.” (Efesios 5:15-16)
Word of the year: Faithfulness – I really desire to be faithful in carrying out the daily tasks I have set for myself all the way through the year. Thus, my word of the year is a constant reminder to be faithful in what I have set out to do.
Spiritual growth and development:
Wake up at 5:00 AM (Monday-Saturday) to do the following from 5:00-7:00*:
M,W,F – English
Bible Reading Plan (45 min) – I will use the 5-day Bible Reading Plan on the ReadingPlan App. I will do the 5 days in 3 days since I am doing my devotional time in English three days per week.
Prayer (30 min) – I will use both notecards that I have created based on “A Praying Life,” by Paul Miller, as well as utilize my prayer journal, prayer walks, etc.
Read a book (30 min) – I will shoot for one book per month which could be spiritual or for personal development. I am starting with, “Praying with Paul,” by D.A. Carson.
Memorize a portion of Scripture (15 min) – I will work on my chosen portion for two weeks at a time and review completed portions. I will start with my verse of the year and will choose subsequent verses from Desiring God’s “Fighter Verses” or simply portions of Scripture that I desire to memorize.
T,TH,S – Spanish
Bible Reading (45 min) – I will spend the year doing an in-depth study of the book of Romans.
Prayer (30 min) – I will use the same methods as in English.
Read a book (30 min) – I will start with, “Orando la Biblia,” by Don Whitney.
Memorize a portion of Scripture (15 min) – I will memorize the same Scripture in both English and Spanish.
*My desire is wake up at 5:00, however I may need to adjust the time frame based around our schedule with our baby.
Marriage and Family
Date Night – Every Sunday I will plan a special date night with Betsy. This will consist of in-home dates after the kids are asleep and going out. I chose Sunday night so that we can still have Saturday night open as a weekend night to hang out with friends or make other plans we desire to do on the weekends.
Family Night – We will continue to do family night together every Friday.
Family Devotions – We will do “Long Story Short” around the breakfast table and our catechism in the evenings.
Run for at least 20 min x 3 days per week.
I see my biggest challenges in waking up/setting aside the necessary time for my spiritual goals and doing a good, consistent job in making the date nights meaningful and special with Betsy. The key to being successful in the spiritual piece is being disciplined in going to bed at a good time to ensure that I can wake up on time. As far as date nights go I will need to be diligent in planning date night activities (things to do at home and scheduling baby sitters) ahead of time. Overall, I know there will be times that I miss days, thus I am focusing on faithfulness – faithfulness to do these tasks everyday and faithfulness to get back on track when I fall off.
If you have goals for 2018 or if this inspired you to set some, I truly hope we are both successful in being FAITHFUL to stick with them even when we need to get back on track so that 2018 can be a very fruitful year spiritually, in our families and marriage as well as in our physical health.