It's natural, as the year comes to an end, to look back and reflect on the events of the past twelve months, to consider how far (or not so far) one has come in that period of time, and to consider the year ahead.
Often it's a time when people create 'resolutions' or formulate goals. From my experience and from what I've heard from others, resolutions are usually broken within a couple of weeks. Instead of recommitting and moving forward, people tend to throw their hands up in despair and stop their self-improvement efforts.
Personally, I have moved from making resolutions to setting goals.While I admit that attempts to accomplish my 2012 goals using the Pick Four system failed, I still managed to complete two of the four on that list - finishing a Christmas short story (published in the anthology All Wrapped Up) and losing weight (17 pounds!).
As I look toward 2013, I have jumped on the Jan Plan wagon, which I found out about on one of the blogs I follow. According to the original post, "The Jan Plan will involve committing to finish one project. One. However you define 'finish'. Just doing what you have to do to get one project out of your unfinished knitting basket." My one project will be the completion of a short story I started this fall. If I successfully "get 'er done", I imagine there will be a Feb Plan, Mar Plan, etc. Please think about joining me and signing up for the challenge!
In the last couple of days, I've also been thinking about how to grow my character this year to become a less critical person. Yes, I admit this is an area in which I struggle. I can be critical of others as well as myself, not even attempting to extend compassion, understanding, or grace - especially if I'm around other judgmental people, who are quick to see the sawdust in another's eye while ignoring the plank in their own (Matthew 7:3-5). From the thoughts and mutterings I was wrestling with yesterday, I know this isn't going to be easy, but I'm determined. It will require me to learn more of God's Word, lean into and depend on Him, and remember that through Christ I have all I need for godly living (2 Peter 1:3). If I come to your mind this year, won't you pray for me?
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