Tuesday, January 2, 2018

2018- The Year to be Fruitful

Every year for the past couple of years I've chosen a word to guide my coming year. I've learned that I stink at resolutions, but a word can give me focus and help me keep myself on track. This year I struggled with finding a word, but then Beth Moore posted a tweet about being "faithful and fruitful", and it kind of clicked.

I want to be fruitful. We are told in God's Word that people can know us by our fruit... and by our fruit they can also know Him. That's truly my greatest desire, even though I don't always show it. I want my life to point to Him, to glorify Him, to bring others to Him.

Being fruitful can be looked at in a variety of ways. Productive. Fertile, meaning ready to grow things. Producing good things.

I want to be those things... but to really guide me, I've chosen Galatians 5:22-23, which describes the fruit of the Spirit, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law."

Because that's how they'll know Him through me... through love, even when it's hard. Joy in all circumstances. Peace that passeth understanding. Patience, even when I'm trying to have quiet time and Caleb is trying to watch Netflix. Kindness when I'm feeling oh so not kind. Goodness to all. Faithfulness even when I'm scared and don't know where I'm going. Gentleness when I really want to be harsh. Self-control... oh,boy!  Because I have none.

So, in 2018, that's what I'll be concentrating on. But I also like to set goals, so here's my 18 for 2018. A lot of them are the same from 2017, because we aren't perfect, just works in progress:

1. Exercise. I always put this one first and will do good for a while, but then fall away. This year, though, I am determined to follow through. At least 10,000 steps a day. 1,000 miles in 2018. Run a 5K. Try new exercise options. Lose weight. I'd like to lose 50 pounds- oh, goodness!
2. Exercise my Spirit. Get in His Word. Read through His Word. I'm participating in Wendy Pope's Read Through the Word. I'll have my Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies. And I've got some other Bible studies to work through, as well. Memorizing His Word- Galatians as well as a weekly memory verse. This is something I've struggled with, but I know I need His Word in me.
3. Keep a prayer journal for myself, and one for someone else each month. I saw this in a challenge- you journal prayers for someone for a month and then give them the journal, so I thought I'd give it a try. I've always been someone who struggles with prayer. I found some great prayer prompts I'll be using.
4. Read 150 books. I fell short of my goal of 130 books in 2017, but I'm an overachiever so we'll see how this goes.
5. Hike- 52 hikes this year, which means some week I'll have to do two a year because let's face it, there's no hiking in this weather right now, at least not for this girl.
6. Explore Ky- visit at least 10 new counties this year. Visit 10 new state parks this year.
7. Continue to pursue learning, and try to learn something new this year. I'd really like to learn American Sign Language or Spanish.
8. Write, every day. I signed up for Compel Training through Proverbs 31 Ministries. This may be the year I finally start on that book =)
9. Laugh, every day.
10. Concentrate on the people in front of me and live present.
11. Random acts of kindness
12. Cross something off my bucket list.
13. Clean my car out at least twice a week.
14. Match socks as they come out of the dryer.
15. Make people a priority- nurture friendship. Be vulnerable.
16. 1,000 gifts- be thankful, every day.
17. Take 15 minutes each day to reflect, plan, and straighten up every night before I go to bed.
18. Support Operation Christmas Child by filling a box a month for a total of 12 boxes.

So there you have it, folks! I'll be checking in and keeping myself accountable... and I even have a group on Facebook now to help me!  May this year be our best yet! <3

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