Friday, January 2, 2009

Hello 2009.

2009 is here, and it scared the bees out of me. 

This is the first year that I really feel like a lot of change is happening at the beginning of it. Usually change takes place at the end or beginning of school semesters, or in the summer or spring if you are getting married. But there is so many things happening at this 2008 meets 2009 mark, it is really kind of overwhelming. For starters, I am moving. This is kind of scary for me just because I feel like I am really an adult now. I mean, I haven't lived with my parents for a long time, but being under the shelter of school and other family members really gives you a sense of security. Now, it's all me, and that can kind of get overwhelming (but exciting at the same time!). 

Second, I am getting a second job. I will be working at the hospital again in the emergency room. This is also exciting but overwhelming because I am going to be really busy. I think that getting a second job is one of the best decision's I have made in a long time though. Having extra money during this change of living fully on my own is smart because I will be able to have extra money while figuring out how much it is going to cost me to live. Plus I am excited to be able to take some trips soon with the extra money I will have (after paying off my car of course...I am so close!). I want to go to DC and Chicago soon soon soon. I am excited to fund my first adult vacation to the East Coast!

Third, I am beginning full force some series in Junior High. January will start our Life's Toughest Questions series, and then we will move into an Acts series in Sundays in February and March, and Fruits of the Spirit series on Wednesdays in February and March. I am excited, but nervous about this as well. 

Finally, to be honest (since the whole world knows this anyway), one of my good friends is moving away. Chris Reinhardt and I have been friends for almost 4 years now. We worked in youth ministry together for a long time. I took a break to go to Biola, and then came back on staff with him in May. Chris is the backbone of our church, and we will all greatly miss him when it comes to helping us with...well....EVERYTHING. But mostly, I will miss his friendship very very much. I will talk more about this when I blog about his going away party on the 11th, but I wanted to throw it out there just to say that things are starting out very strong for 2009, and my life is just changing in every direction. 

So, of course you always have to start out your new years with questions!

Questions to think about in a new year. Read the original article here. Have fun!

1. What's one thing you could do this year to increase your enjoyment of God?
  • Put Him first in everything I do. In everywhere I go, and everything I do, I can ask - "God, does this glorify you."
2. What's the most humanly impossible thing you will ask God to do this year?
  • Bring salvation to my family.
3. What's the single most important thing you could do to improve the quality of your family life this year?
  • Spend more time with them.
4. In which spiritual discipline do you most want to make progress this year, and what will you do about it?
  • Reading my Bible. I don't knooooow....any suggestions?
5. What is the single biggest time-waster in your life, and what will you do about it this year?
  • I worry way too much. I can work on trusting God more.
6. What is the most helpful new way you could strengthen your church?
  • Hmm, good question. Probably in the area of reaching out into the local communities. Lighting a fire in the junior high would be great too. But most importantly, I could "strengthen" myself, and hope that would pour over into the lives of people around me. 
7. For whose salvation will you pray most fervently this year?
  • My family.
8. What's the most important way you will, by God's grace, try to make this year different from last year?
  • I want to be more disciplined and focused on certain personal goals that I have for this year. 
9. What one thing could you do to improve your prayer life this year?
  • I think I could discipline myself to pray more for my brothers and sister who are under major persecution all over the world. 
10. What single thing that you plan to do this year will matter most in ten years? In eternity?
  • Well, i'm moving. And today I met two neighbors already. One came over and asked if I wanted all his dishes because he was planning on giving them away (so nice!). Another was getting his mail and so I introduced myself. He apparently had never met the boys (who lived in the house before me), and that made me think - I am going to go around and meet all of my neighbors. I want to be really intentional about reaching out to my neighbors this year in hopes to share the gospel with them one day. 

In addition to these ten questions, here are twenty-one more to help you "Consider your ways." Think on the entire list at one sitting, or answer one question each day for a month. Personally, I think I will answer all of them in one sitting, but am going to keep these private. I hope that these questions help you think about your life, and your new year in 2009!

11. What's the most important decision you need to make this year?

12. What area of your life most needs simplifying, and what's one way you could simplify in that area?

13. What's the most important need you feel burdened to meet this year?

14. What habit would you most like to establish this year?

15. Who do you most want to encourage this year?

16. What is your most important financial goal this year, and what is the most important step you can take toward achieving it?

17. What's the single most important thing you could do to improve the quality of your work life this year?

18. What's one new way you could be a blessing to your pastor (or to another who ministers to you) this year?

19. What's one thing you could do this year to enrich the spiritual legacy you will leave to your children and grandchildren?

20. What book, in addition to the Bible, do you most want to read this year?

21. What one thing do you most regret about last year, and what will you do about it this year?

22. What single blessing from God do you want to seek most earnestly this year?

23. In what area of your life do you most need growth, and what will you do about it this year?

24. What's the most important trip you want to take this year?

25. What skill do you most want to learn or improve this year?

26. To what need or ministry will you try to give an unprecedented amount this year?

27. What's the single most important thing you could do to improve the quality of your commute this year?

28. What one biblical doctrine do you most want to understand better this year, and what will you do about it?

29. If those who know you best gave you one piece of advice, what would they say? Would they be right? What will you do about it?

30. What's the most important new item you want to buy this year?

31. In what area of your life do you most need change, and what will you do about it this year?

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