Day 730: In Defense Of New Year’s Resolutions

The Covenant Diet - In Defense of New Year's Resolutions

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When I was a teacher, I loved a lot of things about the job. I really enjoyed getting to hang with teenagers every day… I know that makes me kinda wack, but I really did enjoy it. I loved talking about language and stories and persuasion and all of that “English stuff”. I loved helping a kid who had trouble expressing themselves and helping them find their voice.

But honestly, ask any teacher and once we get past the”touchy-feely” parts about why we like teaching, there are a few semi-selfish reasons that we like the job: the breaks. Especially summer break. No, it wasn’t a time devoid of any work… I found myself up at the school multiple times during the summers, but it was a break.

And that break allowed me to start clean, fresh, new every single year.

A new class, a new start, new faces, new lives, new minds.

I didn’t have to keep figuring out ways to keep Bobby Joe focused during reading instead of dreaming about the car he was fixing up at home… because he went on to the next grade. I didn’t have to deal with Samantha and her sassy retorts to every word that would come out of my mouth… because she went on to the next grade. I didn’t have to try to decipher Megan’s handwriting anymore… because she went on to the next grade.

Sure, the new year would bring new students with their own sets of issues, but it was okay. I was ready. I was going to start new. I’d ended the school year before analyzing the things that I’d done and figuring out how to tweak them so that I could make my students’ learning easier as well as my my life more streamlined. And ya know what?

Each year did get easier.

Despite the fact that sometimes the classes were more difficult to handle one year and not the next. Despite the fact that I had a new principal pretty much every single year and had to learn “their way” of running things. Despite the state changing criteria or tests or whatever. I got better each year at planning and at adjusting.

{Ummmmm, okay, so thanks January for that recap on your educational career.}

Well, the thing is… the turn of the New Year is kind of like that for me spiritually. I can view it as a fresh start. Kind of like I imagine the Jews feel after Yom Kippur (The Day of Atonement) when they have confessed been forgiven by God and He has sealed their fate for the next year. It’s just an enticing sort of thought… being pure and new and fresh and clear and new. Because…. well, because…

There is hope in a new beginning.

And hope in Him is often what keeps us going. Now I’m not saying that you should make a slew of resolutions, but I think you should make one:

Pursue God this year.

Pursue His Word. Pursue His Love. Pursue His Forgiveness. Pursue His Wisdom. Pursue His Hope. Pursue His Voice. Pursue Him.

Then receive the peace that comes from His Word. Receive the comfort that comes from His Love. Receive the freedom that comes from His Forgiveness. Receive the renewal that comes from His Wisdom. Receive the joy that comes from His Hope. And receive guidance that comes from His Voice.

You can watch how all of that will trickle down into those goals, hopes, and dreams you have for the year. It is one resolution that won’t fail YOU!

Give it a try, oh, and have a Happy, Happy New Year!

Day 729: An Article From A Business Magazine May Have Saved My Relationship With God

I love facebook.

I’ll admit it.

For a stay-at-home-mom, it’s just such a great way to connect with the outside world! I know that it’s not perfect, but there have been many a time where I have had a quick banter with some friends on there and it’s gotten me through the insanity. But I tend to be the person who is vary wary of sharing links or anything like that (ironically enough I am always thrilled when someone shares one of MY post links!) but there was one link to an article recently that… well, it was a bit of a game changer for me.

You really, really, really… REALLY need to read it.

Entrepreneur Magazine: Forget Setting Goals. Focus on This Instead.

Now… why would this article have annnnnnything to do with Jesus and dieting. It’s about business, no?

No.

You need it because… because it’s resolution time. It’s the beginning of the year, and even if you didn’t tell anyone your resolution or you decided not to make one {like my teacher James Tippit says: “I blew last year’s resolution out of the water. I resolved not to make any resolutions. And I succeeded brilliantly.”}… but secretly, you probably can’t help but to at least have hopes for the new year.

Like I mentioned yesterday on Day 728: I Have Learned The Secret, I realized that the one thing that I wanted to change was meeting with Jesus every single day… because I spent 2013 without doing that and honestly, I was pretty miserable emotionally and spiritually.

But here’s the thing… I wanted to spend time with him all throughout 2013.

I would make resolve upon resolve to wake up early and read my bible. And then I would sleep in morning after morning.

You see, in 2012… which I shall henceforth call “The Year Of Awesome”, both of my kids were pretty well sleeping through the night and staying in their beds until 7am. So, it was easy for me to go to bed at 10pm and wake up at 5:30 to shower and then read my bible and pray for an hour.

But then in 2013 “The Year of Blah” my toddler began waking up multiple times a night (he had a bad case of restless leg syndrome) and once he got past that he started waking up at 5:30 and despite a mixture of threats and bribes… nothing was going to keep him in bed longer. And I certainly wasn’t going to bed at the same time every night and I was sleeping in as long as I could until he woke up. But then after I borrowed this from a friend and then bought this and my whole life got better and he was staying in his bed until 6:30… guess what I still didn’t do?

I still didn’t get up and meet with God.

So when I had my recent epiphany that Jesus was the thing making me content in The Year of Awesome, I realized that I needed to start getting up. And then I read that article and realized, to make this succeed I needed…

a system.

And that is just what I have instituted in my life. A system to help me arrive on-time, eager, and alert to my meetings with God every morning. Now, you can check out now if you like because maybe you get it… maybe you already see where you need a system, and honestly… be my guest! Go for it, write that system down, start it tomorrow. It’s really awesome how well it works! But, just for kicks, here is my system for meeting with God. (And I love schedules… it’s the teacher in me I think… so that’s why it’s all time oriented.)

The night before:
9:25 – prep my “meeting place”, set out my devotional, hot tea stuff, and electric throw blanket
9:30 – brush teeth, wash face, change into PJs and all that pre-bed stuff
9:45 – get in bed, read a book, more bible whatever… no tech.
10:00 – lights out

The Covenant Diet - An Article From A Business Magazine May Have Saved My Relationship With God

The morning of:
5:30 – get up, shower, do my hair, and get dressed
6:00 – walk to my prepared meeting place and… read, pray, and meditate on Him
6:30 – greet my little boys with a smile and a contented heart

I just have to say… my outlook over the past two weeks of doing this has been awe.some. It’s like everything has changed. Everything. And it’s just because I am beginning my day (nothing fancy people, just reading Jesus Calling and the corresponding verses) by renewing my mind. But I am able to do that BECAUSE I set up a system to make it happen.

Anyway, this is so not very touchy-feely but I feel like it can really make a big difference in your life if you have trouble with goals or resolutions or follow-through… which is basically my entire life story.

Give it a go! Let me know how it works or how you use a system! I would genuinely love to hear it because I’d love to steal your idea and use it myself!!! Ha!