There’s something about this week which lies between Christmas Day and New Year’s. For many, it feels like an “off” week…perhaps a different work schedule, the house in chaos trying to find homes for all the new treasures received, travels and family members in and out of the house.
But, for me, this “in-between” week has become the perfect opportunity to vision-cast for the upcoming year. And, it’s not about New Year’s Resolutions, which tend to be broken by January 14th and completely abandoned come February. It’s not about a list of things to do. It’s about a vision to lay out before a new year begins. It’s a guide, directing this upcoming year with intentionality. It’s a vision that turns into a mission.
Last year, I had two points of focus: Freedom and Gratitude. And those two words shifted the way my entire year went. I can look back, not on a “perfect” year, but on one which most certainly witnessed multiple lies being crushed and truths revealed. I can see now how keeping a gratitude list (even though I didn’t update it as regularly as I might’ve liked) completely shifted my perspective to see the things in my life as gifts from God, from the larger, more obvious things to the little, often overlooked moments.
So, with 2014 wrapping up and 2015 ramping up, what is this year all about?
For me, as I’ve prayed about it and sought to hear God’s voice in this “in-between” time, I keep hearing, “Live Today Fully.” You see, I tend to think very futuristically. I plan and make lists, which is great! But, many times, I do this to the detriment and the neglect of living fully in this present moment.
Live – Be here…be present…be active…be aware…just be, experiencing what this moment has to offer.
Today – For this day…as long as I have a “today”…because the only time I truly have is right now.
Fully – Not as little as possible…not “conserving energy”…but giving everything I have to give to the calling I have in this moment.
Live today fully thankful. Live today fully loving. Live today fully serving. Live today fully gracious. Live today fully forgiving. Live today fully hopeful. Live today fully honest (with God, myself, and others). Live today fully Spirit-led. Live today fully responsible (for me). Live today fully releasing (others to be responsible for themselves). Live today fully discipling (myself and those in my care). Live today fully open to God’s unexpected. Live today fully surrendered.
So, this week, I’m spending some time seeking God about what it means for me to live today fully as a child of God, as a wife and mom, for our homeschool, for our ministry, for my writing and teaching, for my extended relationships. What does it look like to live today fully?
Will it be perfect? Nope. Will there be moments I let slip by? Probably. But my goal is not perfection. My goal is living purposefully.
What is 2015 about for you? What does God want you to focus on in this coming year? Who does He want you be (rather than merely what should you do)?
Today, I pray for you that you capture the vision God has for you and this year. And then, that you cast that vision into every arena of your life. May your 2015 be a life-changing and blessed year!
A tall piece of pink card stock graced my dresser top throughout 2013. A list of specific goals. Not so much resolutions to begin on January 1st as they were habits or accomplishments to develop and fulfill throughout the year. It made January easier to swallow in 2013, knowing that I didn’t need to miraculously morph overnight into a super-human goal-conqueror.
Some goals I met. Many I didn’t. One I knocked out of the water.
But everyday, I’d see my list and have direction. So, even on those goals I didn’t fully meet to utmost perfection, I still worked on…still kept at the forefront of my mind what mattered.
This year, I felt a tug from the Lord to shift a little. Rather than a neat list of my top ten for this new year, He gave me two words. Two simple words that underscore a depth tremendous.
Freedom. As in freedom to be exactly who God has designed me to be. As in freedom from the fear of man.
Gratitude. The kind of gratitude Ann Voskamp portrays with exquisite and agonizing beauty in her book One Thousand Gifts. Gratitude that embodies a habit of thanksgiving for both big and small. Gratitude that opens the door to joy and grace. Gratitude that is deeply thankful for the life that already is rather than constantly hoping for the things which are not.
“Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” Philippians 4:8
Freedom…Gratitude…A new way of thinking…A new way of being…that will touch every area of my life and, hopefully, the lives of everyone I touch.
So, with a fresh slice of card stock, resembling the sandy grains of dirt into which God breathed the Breath of Life, I begin a new year. Not so much a list of to-do’s. Much more it is a list of “just be” and be fully.