Tuesday, January 02, 2007
New Year--New Me (aka Resolutions)
Mike took this photo of me in our hallway after Christmas Eve service. This is the beautiful dress (and shoes.. he's one stylish guy!) he bought me for Christmas and I just loved it! Having this new outfit to end the year just reminded me of how much I've changed... physically, spiritually, even in my fashion sense :) and excited me to think about how I will change this coming year.
As I mentioned before... I love setting goals and resolutions for myself. It's fun to think about things I would like to try or areas of my life that I would like to change. I try not to set too many though because I know the more I list... the more I'll fail and I also know that the more I set... the more I'll try to do on my own rather than seeking God's help. So anyway.... it was really fun to look back at what my last years resolutions were:
1. Train for a half-marathon
2. Write a story for a children's book.
3. Organize an English speaking play-group
4. Develop my skills in photography and editing
And this is what I was able to accomplish (though definitely NOT on my own!)...
1. The half-marathon I wanted to run was this year's 2007 HK Marathon in March and while I won't be doing the half-marathon (when I first started training my knee hurt and I literally couldn't walk right for a few days) I will be running the 10K! (well as long as my registration has gone through... I probably should check that eh?)
2. I have an idea for a Children's book and I have the basics written out but I have not completed it. I want to write an ABC book on the characteristics of God and while I have all the characteristics (except for the letter X) I also want to include scripture references and I need to find all of those first.
3. Done... there are five of us right now!
4. Done... I have greatly improved (well at least I think so... lol) I know I still have a lot to learn but hey... at least I'm trying.
So what resolutions have I set for this year???
1. To research hard (Bible, commentaries, people, web-sites, etc..) those things that I question or don't totally understand to find God's truth so that I don't just walk away with an opinion... I walk away knowing where that opinion came from, what verses support my decision, etc.
Why? I found myself last year learning a lot of new things and understanding that I have my own opinions about these things but yet when I would blog about them... I never had specific references to refer to. I don't really want to be a person who just spouts off their opinion... I want to be able to have reasoning behind it.
2. To blog more about the blessings of life and what I'm learning about God and myself.
Why? I started this blog to be able to look back and see how God has worked in my life but towards the end of the year... it became more of just simply what I did each day. And while that's fun to recollect... I want my blog to be more meaningful to me and anyone that may read it. I want to be able to look back and see that I'm growing and I want to encourage/challenge others to grow too.
3. Email/Snailmail more regularly
Why? When we first moved to HK, I was incredible (in my opinion...lol) of emailing, sending photos, just plain ole keeping in touch with people and writing regular prayer updates but again I slowly slacked off and have lost contact with a few really special people to me so I want to get back into regular touch with them and I want my family to be able to see regular photos of Isabella and we have an INCREDIBLE group of what I call 'Prayer Warriors' (those that have asked to receive our prayer updates... if you'd like to be a part of that just send me an email) and I want to take advantage of their prayers and support. I want to be able to share with them how God is working.. how their prayers are being answered and just plain let them know how much we appreciate them!
4. Take care of myself.
Why? Since moving to HK, I have really worked hard to live a healthier life. I have been exercising regularly, eating much better and it has paid off in so many ways. I have lost about 60+ lbs (well since having Isabella anyway), I have more energy (maybe not so much in the mornings but that's for a different reason and something else I will personally be working on LOL) I feel strong, confident, etc. I've never felt so great in my life and I want to continue to feel this way for the rest of my life. I also want to set a good example for Isabella and be around to enjoy all the stages of life. But on top of the exercising and eating healthy.. I want to take care of myself spiritually and emotionally. I have many things to work on in these areas but I know that with God's help... He'll change me because while 'He loves me just the way I am... He doesn't want me to stay this way.'
So that's it.... a very different set of resolutions this year and there are many more specific things that fall into those categories but I know it's going to be a good year. As I said last year... 'In all I do, I want to glorify and serve God' and that's ultimately my heart's desire.
I found this prayer on Gospelcom.net in regards to New Year's Resolutions and I really loved it and so I decided this prayer was going to be my 'life prayer' (well at least for this year... maybe I'll find something different in the future).
As we enter a new year, may the prayer of St. Francis of Assisi become ours: "Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love; Where there is injury, pardon; Where there is doubt, faith; Where there is despair, hope; Where there is darkness, light; Where there is sadness, joy. O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek To be consoled, as to console; Not so much to be understood as To understand; Not so much to be loved As to love; For it is in giving that we receive; It is in pardoning that we are pardoned; It is in dying that we awaken to eternal life."
Praying everyone has a year that draws them closer to our Almighty God!