Tuesday, December 31, 2013

On New Year's resolutions:

I can't think of a bigger cliche that is doomed to failure than the worn out "New Year's resolutions" people so often make.  I've never, in my 45 years, made a New Year's resolution till now...

This time around, I have two resolutions.  One has to do with getting in better shape, I'm guessing I'm alone in making that one.  The other has to do with productivity.  I'm sure no one else feels they need to be more productive with their time.

The funny thing is, I have a great work ethic and have always enjoyed hard work and exercise.  So why this sudden felt need to make these resolutions?  This year, 2013 was inspiring but simultaneously it was grueling.
In the grueling parts of the year, I slacked off from the gym and completely quit working out at the gym.  Tammy and I had been going to gym for several years consistently, if not daily at least a few days a week.  Then, even though I rode my bike regularly all summer, I tore it up in the end of October.  I miss working out, and I know I need it to be as healthy as possible.

As for inspiring, we have seen a few new people at New Song, and have had a few great events that really encouraged me.  Additionally, writing had felt very rewarding for the first time in 2013.  Going into 2013, I wrote for a year or more for Wineskins.  I also realized I've contributed for two years now to the religion column I write for the Kingsport Times News.  It's always amazing to me when I meet strangers and they say they read my column.  It feels good.

Also, speaking of writing, in a time of prayer last January, I asked God for some guidance.  I asked God, where else could I write besides Wineskins & the newspaper.  "What else do you know, besides ministry?" was the soft, still response I felt.  I thought, Concrete.  So I searched the Internet for a concrete magazine I was familiar with, emailed the editor and submitted a query.  After two or three articles, the editor graciously approached me, inviting me to write a monthly column.

I have a couple of other writing projects I've scribbled down in notebooks, and want to squeeze into the business of life & ministry.  And I want to work out again.

How will I do this by jumping on the bandwagon of the New Year's resolution club?  For starters, I'm planing on getting up an hour earlier than usual.  So during the school year I would get up at 7:00 a.m., now I will get up at 6:00 everyday (that choice was inspired by a trip to the Hemingway house in Key West, the curator told us EH got up and started working at 6:00 everyday).

Also, I play online chess most evenings.  I'm not sure if I'll be so drastic I terminate my chess account, but I think I will.  If Zach will play a few live games with me during the week, then I probably will.  And, I will probably use Facebook differently.  Believe it or not, FB is a great resource for staying connected in ministry.  I plan to discipline my time spent on FB/Twitter.

Finally, Tammy and I are going to pick up a new gym membership, and I plan to buy another bike.  I hope to ride at least 3 days a week, and I hope we hit the gym at least 3 days.

There, I made my resolutions known; whew!  I hope my efforts in ministry, writing, and being healthier are all successful.  Here's to 2014, and may we make the most of the time God gives us.

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