The temperature is 4 degrees outside. Instead of face the sub-zero wind chill, I decided to check my planner to see how I'm doing with New Year's resolutions.
I'm not as far behind as I thought.
I resolved to memorize Scripture this year, a chapter a month. The first chapter of John has been quite a challenge, with 51 verses. By this point in the month, I should have 25 verses memorized. I'm not there yet, but I do have 16 verses memorized and am working on the 17th.
How have I managed it? I spend a few minutes memorizing every morning, but I also ponder the verses and find applications in my life throughout the day. I try to live the Scripture I'm learning by soaking in its truth.
Two weeks into the month, Scripture memorization is already becoming a habit.
My mentoring partner and I are holding each other accountable, as well. We agreed to quote the verses we'd learned in our Sunday morning time together. As you might imagine, I practice hard to be sure I'm ready. Accountability is key.
"Take a blogging course" was on my list for January. I signed up for a four-part online course. I'm through the prequel course and 1/3 of the way through the main course. It's harder than I expected and taking more time than I wanted, but I'm learning critical skills. I'm stopping to practice what I've learned, which nails the knowledge down and assures I understand the material.
Get at least 10,500 steps every day was also one of my goals. Yesterday was the first time I fell short, with just under 9,000 steps. I should've finished out my goal on the elliptical, but I worked on a writing project until late.
If you want lots of steps, put horses in the barn at night and walk back and forth. Add cleaning out the stalls and you'll have more steps than you can imagine.
One simple lifestyle change has made all the difference.
I'm supposed to be following the DASH diet this year. Less salt and meat. Lots more vegetables and fruits. A weekly pot of vegetarian vegetable soup helps me meet my vegetable requirement, and a supply of fruit in the crisper has made the difference with the fruit requirement. (I'll do a different blog post later on specifics)
Weather and limbs on fences have prevented a few outings and meetings I'd planned, but there's still time. Reading 100 books this year is also on my list. I've finished seven already. (I'll do a blog post on how-to's)
The most important part of sticking to my resolutions was in the making. I prayed about every area of my life. What changes were needed? How should they be done? It's not an accident that Scripture memory is the FIRST resolution on which I work every single day.
I didn't stop after praying about my resolutions. I pray about my to-do list and about how to get it done, too. Specific, goal-directed prayer is a critical part of my daily life.
I've already begun to tackle some of the most challenging areas in my life and I'm making progress. How? Because I've made a plan, stuck to it, and prayed it through.
What are your resolutions for the year? What changes did you plan to make? It's not too late to meet your goals. Make a start now, take consistent steps, and you, too, can have an amazing year.
The mind of a man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps." Proverbs 16:9 nasb
In case you missed it, here's the link to yesterday's post: When Snow Doesn't Fall: 6 Ways to Deal with the Disappointment of Unmet Expectations
You might also like: How to Change 2018 From Just Getting By to Simply Amazing
Photo by Jessica Lewis on Unsplash