Sunday, January 1, 2012

Fifty For the New Year!

Welcome, Purple Whipped Cupcake! I've been trying to break that 49-follower-mark for the longest time, and it's a great way to start the new year. Let's see if I can break 100 by the end of 2012.

I'd like to start off the new year by thanking each and every one of you for following along with my musings, for commenting, for all of your support and encouragement in my writing and in my Journey -- OUR Journey, as we're all in this together. (Insert High School Musical Music with Guy From Modern Family dancing.)

I have some goals this year, in lieu of resolutions, because I'm not so great at those. I want to do some memorization this year, but on a realistic level. I think memorizing a verse a week is about what I can handle. I'm beginning with Galatians 5:22-23, which is the Fruit of the Spirit passage. I opened my new devotional by Max Lucado (love him) this morning, and the entire book began with two pages of choices. As you might know from reading, I like that idea. "I choose love", "I choose joy", "I choose peace", and a blurb under each of them as to what that means, going through each of the fruits of the spirit (the rest of which are patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control). Seeing as how I have great difficulty nurturing these fruits within myself, it was a great way to begin the book, and that particular verse seemed to be the best way to begin my memorization for the year.

Another goal is to practice, in all things, this 'acceptance' which I've so recently been taught to live by. I ran into my guru/spiritual mentor in the grocery store last night while my husband and I were buying junk food for our stay-at-home celebration. Just seeing his face brought a smile to mine, and it gave me a little more motivation for the new year. God knew I needed to see him, I think, so there he was and there I was. I digress -- acceptance is the only way to survive this life. Acceptance of circumstances, of situations, of God's will for me, of the good along with the bad. This will help me live with peace and joy in all things. The less I try to fight and control, the better I will feel and the more I will enjoy life.

I've stopped trying to lose a certain amount of weight, because it misses the point. What I really want is to be in good shape, to be healthy. I need to make improvements in my diet, my exercise plan, my sleep patterns, and my general stress level. If I can simply make some improvements, I think my quality of life will be better, and I will be more energized and more able to handle whatever comes my way.

The last thing I'd like to accomplish is to get out of debt. I'm not talking about the house, because there's no way to pay *that* off this year, but there's just a small amount of creeping debt still laying around that shouldn't be too much of a problem. The rest of that goal is to stay out of debt from now on. I don't want to put anything else on the two credit cards we have. I want to be able to build a small savings to use in case of emergencies, to have a little "net", just in case, so we won't even have to use the credit cards if something goes wrong with our cars or house.

I find that when I make resolutions, I give up pretty quickly and I feel like a failure. I find that when I set goals, I have a better chance of accomplishing something and feeling good about that. I know I can memorize things, I know I can make healthier choices, I know I can learn to accept life, and I know I can get rid of this debt and stay out of it. Instead of setting myself up for failure, I'm setting myself up for reliance on Him to get me through whatever comes my way.

That's a New Year I can handle!

Stephanie Jean

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