Summer is meant to be enjoyable.
Me? This is what I have to say about summer.
While I learned many lessons, I don’t know if I would quite call it ‘enjoyable’. Maybe, some of it. Not all of it.
Lately I have the word, “alas”. Only, I don’t use it correctly. The dictionary defines it as “an expression of grief, pity, or concern.” This summer was filled with alas moments. Times of sorrow. Times of concern. I could literally throw a party to celebrate its ending.
Goals? Yes, please!
Never-the-less, I am stoked to be able to kick off Fall with some goal setting.
To jump in feet first, by setting goals. Before setting goals, I must ask this question: “What areas of my life do I earnestly want to see progression and growth in?” My goals should support these areas, to provide new growth opportunities. Some may be focused on things of the temporary, yet necessary, realm, while others focus on nurturing my spiritual, and eternal, life and/or taking care of myself emotionally. Yet, they are all important areas.
To you, dear reader, I ask you this: “In your life, what areas have become stagnant and malnurished? How can you take care of your body, mind, emotional center, and spirit this week?”
I am coming into this week’s goal inventory, having just survived the season of summer and physical trial. A lot of areas have gone unkept, not progressing in important areas of my life. Some, more noticeable than others. But goal-setting is an important part, so that I can be deliberate in these things. Ohh, the beauty of making goals and feeling well enough to carry them out. I am ready to get started.
Do: There are three specific areas I hope to improve in over the coming week.
The basic goal is to keep caught up on housework. We have an impending “almost-inspection” next Monday, so this week needs to be spent organizing, putting things away that have found themselves plopped on our dining room table or kitchen counters, and stay caught up on dishes. Things like that. Last week, I really got to reemerge into staying caught on housework (you just wouldn’t know it, by looking at the front of our apartment). It is so nice to be able to get to work in the house, and be able to stand to clean.
It is even exciting.
Our apartment, this summer, looked like a tornado hit it over and over again.
I can undo some of the damage step-by-step. Overall, it looks pretty good right now.
- Develop a sturdy prayer and study routine. I heard a quote yesterday. “The closer we get to Him, the closer He gets to us.” The speaker gave a good suggestion, to turn off the tv. In developing a sturdy habit of spending time with Lord Jesus, my Creator and Savior, I need to find ways to “get away” with Him. Each day will likely look different than the previous day. Here are some key companions for this goal.
- Begin with a time of praise and worship during “physical therapy” (see number 2). Exercise is about more than moving my body. It is a form of worshiping God. That’s what it is to me. There is something about it, that instantly draws me into His presence.
- Get into the Word of God regularly. Two specific routines are (1) Going through the Psalm 119 study I am involved in on a consistent basis (2) Listen to the Word of God at bedtime, instead of turning on the television.
- Enter a time of prayer. This connects with a time of worship and exercise. Exercise is almost like a catalyst for entering a season of spiritual disciplines. As I go through my day, my focus needs to be on communing with God. Simply being with my Creator and doing things that encourage me-and-Jesus interaction.
- I have mentioned how exercise instantly draws me to the Lord. I need to make sure I continue in pursuing exercise in the earlier part of my day. It may be 20 minutes, or less, but there is significance in it – knowing how it turns my focus to Christ, and initiates a time of praise to the Father.
- Listening daily to Christian radio (like Air 1) is likely another catalyst, charges my spirit and draws me into His presence.
- Make a habit of writing, daily, as I reflect on time spent with the Lord.
Read: I have several books I am currently reviewing. This week, the ones I hope to dive into include:
- I Will Praise You in the Storm (Danny L. Deaubé)
- Fervant (Priscilla Shirer)
- Invisible (Jennifer Rothschild)
Learn: I want to take time to pray and learn about where God wants for me to serve. I need to reflect on my spiritual gifts, their purpose, and how they can be utilized. I need to see how God wants to use me. A specific question could be, “does he want me to stay in _______________ (name of activity) or begin to serve in __________________ (name of activity) instead?”
Be: prayerful. Jesus Christ is our remedy against any problem we may face. God promises to never depart from us. How are you learning to trust Him with your needs, and bring them to Him in prayer?
Then Asa cried out to the LORD his God, “O LORD, no one but you can help the powerless against the mighty! Help us, O LORD our God, for we trust in you alone. It is in your name that we have come against this vast horde. O LORD, you are our God; do not let mere men prevail against you (2 Chron. 14:11, NLT)!”
Check out the rest of 2 Chron. 14, to see how God delivered in Asa’s midst.