- I'm setting a once a month goal. January was to get us dental insurance... and I've done it. (Now to make the appointments. Did I mention I hate the dentist. I know hate is a strong word, but I do.) In February, I'd really like to set a 'eat out once a week ONLY' goal. For serious. We'll see how the family reacts.
- I want to run 5 - 5k's. The half marathon was a little ambitious last year... but if I can accomplish the real goal of running consistently all this year, I may be able to accomplish the half marathon I want to run next year. I have about 14 months to prepare. Surely. But we'll wait until next year to set that goal.
- Here's a gutsy / financial goal. I need / want my wisdom teeth taken out this year. I know it's not much of an 'accomplishment', but with no insurance to cover it, it'll be a huge accomplishment to fund it. Then, I have to get the courage to do it.
- Also in the financial realm - I've got my heart and mind set on a trip to Disney with the kids for 2014. It sounds like a 2014 goal, but it means we have to start preparing in 2013. The goal is to fund 2/3's of the trip in our savings account.
- Also financial, there a few 'extra accounts' I'd like to get set up. I'll leave it vague, but with all the extra funding this year, I may need an extra job :/ This will definitely have to be, as Dave Ramsey puts it, a 'live like no one else, so you can live like no one else' kind of year... (lifestyle?).
- Another goal is to finish the book I started last year. Yeah, that was last year's aspiration too. But you know the difference? For the first time in my life I don't care much what happens to it after it's written... I care that I've felt called to write it, and I desire to be faithful in that.
- And lastly - here's a random goal for you - I want to get out to the gun range, learn how to shoot well, and get myself a gun. I know, right.
How's that for great randomness? But seriously, these are all things that would lead me into '14 with a greater sense of security and in a better frame of mind. (Ok, Disney is a stretch on that front, but we all need a vacation now and again, right?)
It's amazing. We were singing 'overcome' on Sunday during worship, and these aspirations have been swirling randomly through the back of my mind throughout the weeks of this new year, and the chorus rang, "All authority, every victory is yours," and though I know the heights and depths of the weight of that victory, I can't help but know that even these small daily victories are His as well. Every step ran and not walked is a victory (trust me on this one) that He must get the glory for. Every penny put in the savings is a victory that He is responsible for. Every shot on the gun range, oddly enough, accomplishes something that I feel has been on my heart for sometime, a responsibility that He's asked of me. And every victory is His... and every failure is mine. It gives me a new zest, a new zeal to be successful, so that God can receive glory from me in all things.
He's been surprising me in the places He has shown up lately: through the mouth of my four year old as he sings worship songs and plays his drums, making me yearn for salvation to come to our house, in His time. It's come through the story of Moses, and the revelation that God is not only love, friends, He is also wrath... a concept difficult, but necessary, to teach to our children. He's taught me the great relief that is Jesus' sacrifice on the cross. I've known it in head knowledge, but He's making it ever fresh as I struggle through the pages of Leviticus... through the repetitious sacrificing of doves and lambs and offerings made precisely a certain way, He's revealed to me that obedience may have been too much for me, for most, during a time when cleansing was so complicated. He's testing my heart for the lost and unchurched, He's revealing to me the protection a church offers the sheep, He's reminding me of the weightiness of our call to take the Gospel to the world and to love immensely.
It is a welcomed time, friends, a time the precursors a terribly busy time in my life. My one job becomes two, B's t-ball starts again, and our church services, by God's grace and for His glory, change from one weekly service to two. It is my prayer that the busy-ness does not diminish the Lord's will and direction in my life, but rather would give our family the opportunities to thrive in our goals, to thrive in our work, and to thrive in our call to take the Gospel forth and to love people well, all for the glory of God.
It's a sweet time, ya'll. And I'm thankful for all of the many blessings that He has lavished upon us. I'm reminded how unworthy I am. Reminded that what I deserved was misery and death... no peace, no joy, no hope, yet the Lord has turned my mourning into dancing...
Until next time -