A new beginning.
2016 lays stretched out before us, blank as the first page in a new composition book, waiting for us to fill it in one experience, one adventure at a time.
My deepest desire for this next year is to experience God’s presence, love, power and provision in a profound way, and to share my journey with you as I set out to be the woman God has made me to be. I am hoping this translates into a book that will allow others to follow suit: to get rid of whatever is holding them back and to dare to live in the abundance of God’s good gifts, most notably his love for them.
Month by month, the plan is to add new principles, Biblical truths, or disciplines (usually a combination of the three) to my life until I am living in freedom from bad habits and negative thought patterns (i.e. selfishness, anger, worry, etc.) and to implement God’s way of living as laid out plainly in Scripture.
Of course, I have all the usual goals for this new year: lose weight, get out of debt, find love, so on and so forth, and I will incorporate some of these into my journey, but infusing Jesus and his principles for a simple, peaceful life well lived into every last bit of who I am is the one true thing I wish to attain.
My big questions for including or excluding things or activities in my life in 2016 will be these: Does it benefit or harm me spiritually, emotionally, physically and financially? Does it fit in or hinder me from reaching long term goals? These questions will play a big role in decision making throughout this journey.
January is my detox month. Mental and spiritual detox. I am cutting out or drastically cutting back outside noise. I find I am so inundated with outside noise and information that I barely have time to think. There’s Netflix and cable and Facebook at home, and music in the car, and other people at work. I have plenty of alone time, but I still find myself distracted to the point of inactivity. An hour can go by easily and I’ve been sitting around staring at a screen.
This is not harmless. This is my life.
Entertainment has a time and place, and it’s high time I put it in its place.
January is my month of quiet. As I stated Monday, Netflix is going bye-bye. I will allow myself one movie per weekend. That’s reasonable, and maybe I will be so bored I will clean the house or meet up with a friend for coffee. I’m going to consciously make an effort to use Facebook as little as possible. No mind-numbing Tetris sessions on the tablet. I’m not reading fiction, but non-fiction is okay, because it is important to learn from others’ wisdom and experience. No music except for worship music. I don’t need to know if the hotline blings or if Adele’s boyfriend ever answers the phone.
This may seem excessive, but in reality I believe it’s going to be extremely freeing and open my mind up to have time for what truly matters. I need to detox from things that are not reality and that won’t help me get closer to God and my goals.
During January, I look forward to spending quality time with God, myself, and my friends without the distraction of useless information and noise. I will have time to pray, think deep thoughts, write, and plan ahead. Afterwards, it’s up to me to determine whether or not to keep it up. I love reading and movies, and these things are not inherently bad, but I want my life to glorify God and bring me joy, so I need to assign value to my time and fill it with things that are eternally valuable.
I am excited about this mental and spiritual detox and I welcome anyone who could use a refresh or a reset for the upcoming year to join along with me. I would love to do this journey in the good company of like-minded people. Anyone interested?