It may seem a little late in the game, but January as a whole is a contemplative month for me. I like to pray and think about my goals for the year before committing to them, and December is such a busy month I usually don't do it before the new year hits. I mean, there were 54 people in this house over Christmas. Not exactly conducive to deep and pondering thoughts. 😉
For the past few years I have picked a word of the year that I felt the Lord laid on my heart for that year. My word for 2016 was CHANGE, which came from a preparing of my heart for what I knew would be a year of change! I was facing a new boss, new leadership at church, becoming an Aunt for the first time, and of course by the end of the year voting on a new president.
Change is not something I usually embrace, but I knew 2016 would be a time I needed to learn to do so! And I'm so glad I did, as the year brought even more change then I realized early on. I changed from 2 part time jobs to 1 full-time, and changed positions within that job. So. Much. Change!
Looking back now on the year, I am thankful for the outcome of each and every one of those changes, but now I am ready to change my focus to 2017 and a year of PURPOSE.
Philippians 3:14 says, "I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus."
First and foremost, I want to live this year pressing toward the mark of God's purpose, not my own.
"I want my purpose in life to be the same purpose for which God the Father called me, God the Son redeemed me, and God the Holy Spirit empowered me." -- Pastor Bob Philbrick
It's not enough to just sit back and wait for God's will and God's purpose to fall in front of me. I want to be pressing toward that mark! And that requires living my life with purpose.
Secondly, I want to live my life with purpose in a practical way.
What are the efforts I am pouring myself into each day? Am I mindlessly spinning around in circles, following every next whim and fancy, or am I intentional about the things I say 'yes' to?
I often feel as though I am simply flying from one thing to another between work, church commitments, piano lessons, and other things that come up. Amidst all the flying, am I truly doing the best things? Or am I just doing all the things, not thinking about how they are going to affect me or those around me?
A few ways I intend to be purposeful this year:
- Spending an hour with God each day
- Setting a monthly budget and sticking to it
- Setting specific goals, something I've fallen off the bandwagon with in recent years!
- Less time on social media
Some last thoughts for this blogging community...what does purposeful living mean to you? And if you have picked a word or motto for 2017, I'd love to hear what it is.