Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Looking Forward to 2015

It's that time of year.  Whether you make resolutions or not, this time of year can be one for reflection on the past and planning ahead to the future.  I always make sure to take a few hours by myself at a coffee shop to ponder and pray before diving back into the regularity of daily life.  For 2015, my planning and goal setting will revolve around this wonderful new book, Own Your Life: Living with Deep Intention, Bold Faith, and Generous Loveby Sally Clarkson.  I will take the month of January to ponder what priorities God has for me, in my unique family, situation, and with my unique gifts and talents.

Here are some of the things I consider in the areas of marriage, parenting, homeschooling, health, homemaking, and ministry:

 -What went well last year?

 -What is God calling me to change?

 -Which routines are still working for our family?

 -Which routines need a tune-up and which can be dropped?

 -What friendships does God want me to invest in this year?  As finite humans, we can only sustain and deeply invest in a limited number of people- listen for those God would have you focus on this year.

 -What books do I want to read this year?  As a book hound, I've found that having a list keeps me on track to read some challenging classics as well as the just-for-fun reading.  I keep this list on the app, Good Reads and refer to it regularly.  

 -What crafts do I hope to complete this year?

Once I spend time praying over these things by myself, I share what I've learned with my husband as well as ask for his input for the upcoming year.  This is a special time of looking forward together and discuss goals for our family.

Another thing I try to do now (or at the start/end of a school year) is to ask my children some questions.

  -What have we done recently that you really enjoyed?  (I focus on homeschooling, but could apply to any area of their life.)

 -What sports are currently holding their interest?

 -Which friendships would they like to invest in more deeply this year?

 -Is there anything I can do differently to help them in their chores/school/family routines?

 -What would they like to learn about this year?

By asking these questions, I am listening to my kids' current interests and can tailor our calendar to include some of them.  One year, they both mentioned wanting to learn more about dinosaurs so we spent an entire week doing nothing but dinosaurs.  It was a special time of fun and learning in our home.   One child was also able to articulate that he didn't like being rushed.  I now try to slow my own words and actions and also to include more "cushion" into our day to accommodate his need for a slower pace.

Taking time to plan and pray gives me focus and intention to move into a new year.  "Where there is no vision, the people perish."  Proverbs 29:18.

Check out #ownyourlifebook on Instagram for some beautiful photos of ways other people plan to own their lives in 2015.
What do you do to move intentionally into a new year?


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Sally Clarkson said...

I just love your heart and all of your priorities. I jotted down a couple for myself today. Thanks for this, Jenny.

Jennifer Kindle said...

Joining you in all of this

Jennie Nelson said...

thanks, friends. :) It's so much easier to do this life with a tribe of like-minded women! love you.

Melissa said...

Love the pictures! Especially you and Sara:) You are so thoughtful about your family and it is inspiring.

The Roy Family said...

So blessed to be part of your tribe! Let's do 2015 with bold intention and encourage each other to Own Our Lives!