From the Associate Pastor’s Desk: New Year’s Goals…

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Another year down and another year to go. The new year is always great because, for many of us, it means a fresh start. Most years, I just use the beginning of the new year to simply reset many things I should be doing better. I hate being cliché, so I do not normally do any official New Year’s resolutions. Although, this year my wife and I were spending some time together in the car, on our way back from Des Moines, and decided to make some official resolutions! Well, I guess I didn’t call them “resolutions”; I called them “goals.” Anyways, here are some of my goals for 2019…

1) Limit my phone time – This is difficult for many, but needed for most. Phones are great, and they make us so efficient; but I fear they often rob us of many small things we take for granted. I don’t have any science to back this claim up, just personal experience. So, this year my wife and I put password protected time limits on our entertainment apps so we can only check them a certain amount of times in a day. I hope that instead of flipping through news or sports at night, I can have better conversation with my wife; or instead of getting distracted with my phone, I can stay focused on the task at hand; or instead of pulling it out anytime I feel like I have five minutes of down time, I can use that time to reflect, start a conversation with someone near me, or pray.

2) Read a chapter of a book before any TV time – I used to hate reading, but now I love it! Reading can be very hard though after I have been in an office all day. It is much easier to “veg out” and pop on a TV show when I have free night. I don’t think that is wrong, but I fear I am missing out on some good opportunities. Reading is a skill that everyone should learn to love, because it helps our brains and imaginations stay sharp.

3) Enjoy one sweet treat a day – I used to try to limit myself to one sweet treat a week; but that would never last long, and then I would end up eating waaaaaay too much when I had a chance. So, this year I am choosing moderation instead of starvation!

4) Journal each time we go on a date – My wife and I always say we are going to start journaling, but never find the time. We love the idea of it, because there are so many good memories and lessons we want to remember. Journaling helps us to be reflective about the things we do and allows us to look at what we’ve done as well. It can be daunting to do every day, but we figured on a date night, while waiting for our food, would be a great time to journal.

5) Have one family in our home a month – I am always out doing things and spending time with people. In fact, I probably only get one or two free nights a week because I am always doing stuff with people. It’s different though to have someone in your home. There is a sense of vulnerability and intimacy that comes along with having someone in your home. My wife and I have not been as good this last year as we have been in the past, so we would just like to be more intentional about our hospitality this year.

Well, those are my goals! Nothing crazy, but some things that I think can make a big difference in the life of my family. What are yours?

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