January 11, 2015

2015 || January

Hard to imagine that this month is almost at the halfway point and I'm only now sitting down to reflect and create goals. Some of these are already in the works so I don't feel like a failure right off the bat for 2015. Right? If you missed my previous post, I talked about my desire to be more intentional in about 5-7 different facets of my life this year and gave a brief vision for each of them. Each month though, I want to sit and jot down a handful of goals--actionable steps--that work towards those visions. Here we go January!

|| Career
  • Focus on applying to at least three positions per week
  • Substitute work
  • Pray
  • Organize teaching/ed materials 
  • Launch teaching blog

|| Spiritual

|| Blogging
  • Get back on track with a blogging schedule
  • Prioritize a specific time to write
  • Skype chat with another fellow blogger friend
  • Catch up on on reading and commenting on blogs I follow

|| Stewardship

|| Wellness...
  • Come up with new workout regiment  
  • Drink more water
Your turn! What are some of your goals this month you're working towards?

    January 10, 2015

    2015 || Be Intentional

    I've never been a fan of New Years. With each new year a new crop of posts on resolutions and goals pop up on my feeds. I tend to steer away from the ranks on this one and pass by the new year blog post opportunity. Making resolutions, goals... haven't been my thing (which is ironic given my inclination to planning). I don't like New Years because all to often it feels like a weighty reminder of everything I didn't do well in the previous year and what I need to be doing better.

    Translation: New Years = "You weren't awesome. Be awesome this year. Or else."
    And it's always screaming those words in that depressing tone my inner voice can conjure up.

    But I've also felt this need for some serious focus with 2015 because it's a year of many new fresh starts. A fresh start to my career. A fresh start to differing relationships in my life. A much needed fresh start to different aspects of my life like finances, health, and more.

    Some people pick words or phrases--themes--they want to focus on for a year--something I've never really done... until now. For months now, I've been thinking about and praying what 2015 is to be about:

    Being intentional. Trusting God. I want to be more intentional with the days I've been given. And I want to trust the One who holds everything in His hands--and orchestrates it all for His glory and my ultimate good.

    However that theme for this season gets fleshed out in reality--I'm not entirely sure, but I am excited to see it come to fruition. This is a learning process. Learning what being intentional looks like that is an overflow from trusting the One who authors my life and days.

    To begin, this is the first year in many, in which I'm going to set goals (actionable steps) that will hopefully lend themselves to this anthem. I've picked six facets of my life to hit the refresh button on for 2015--six facets to be more intentional about.


    Career // In case you didn't hear the news--I finished my undergrad degree a handful of weeks ago and am sporting a diploma now. It's exciting and scary all at the same time. And so weird that I'm not a college student anymore. Time to put my foot to the peddle with a job now.

    How does that look intentionally?
    • Work. Bam.
    • Praying I can get work. 
    • Organize all the materials I've accumulated in the past few years
    • Professional Development

    Spiritual // Obviously I want to be stretched in my faith. I don't know quite what that's going to look like yet, but each year I just pray that God would grow and birth in me what He knows I need.

    How does that look intentionally?
    • Study 4 books of the Bible in-depth
    • Continue to teach the kiddos at Sunday school
    • Start community/Bible study group
    • Having those honest "heart-to-heart" faith conversations
    • Seeking wisdom through prayer, study, and community
    • Seriously dwell on this question: What kind of believer am I? For those are the disciples I will mold and make, which in turn forms the church we're building together.

    Blogging // I let it slip this past fall--partially because of time constraints, but mainly because I've struggled to find words to string together into sentences and paragraphs. I've been thinking about the direction I want this little space here of mine to move towards, and I'm still in the process of figuring all of that out currently. I do know that I want what I write here to be more thoughtful though. I don't want to post something just for the sake of posting--which translates into less, but better, deeper, richer content. I'll also be thinking about different or newer ways for me to participate in the blogging community this year that I haven't before. (Got ideas? I'd be glad to hear them!)

    How does that look intentionally?
    • Consistent blogging schedule that I can stick to 
    • Immersing myself in the things which stimulate me to write in the first place
    • Reach out to other blog friends in different ways 
    • Thinking twice before hitting the 'publish' button

    Reading // This year I want my reading diet to be more diverse. I want to focus more on slowly digesting books, rather than consuming them. Normally I end up reading anywhere around 30-40 in a given year, but last summer I noticed that it was becoming more difficult to stick to books or even get into them. I think a part of that was focusing too much on reading as many books as I could, instead of just enjoying them.

    How does that look intentionally?

    Stewardship // Having now graduated it's time to re-evaluate everything I do in terms of finances. It's not a fun thing to do (being a non-math-lover personally), but necessary.

    How does that look intentionally?
    • Begin paying off my student loans--and as much as possible
    • Developing a budget that will work
    • Work towards buying my own car

    Physical // It's about taking care of myself and stewarding my health in a God-honoring way, so that I can in turn be at my best for the work God has given me to do. Plain and simple.

    How does that look intentionally?
    • Routinely working out
    • Establish morning and evening weekday routines/rituals (Read: Getting back on track with my sleep schedule and figuring out what I need to daily do to set myself up for the day and end it well)
    • Eat more salads 
    • Establishing a sabbath rhythm 

    Many leaders and studies have found that when we put something in writing, we become more committed to it, so I'll be tracking my progress here on the blog in hopes that it helps me to stick to this race. I learn best through writing and through visuals, so I've also created a pin board that serves as a place of inspiration, reminders, and resources for this year.

    January 9, 2015


    Take me to your trees. Take me to your breakfasts, your sunsets, your bad dreams, your shoes, your nouns. Take me to your fingers. ~Margaret Atwood in Good Bones
    Lately I’ve been thinking about who I want to love, and how I want to love, and why I want to love the way I want to love, and what I need to learn to love that way, and how I need to become to become the kind of love I want to be. And when I break it all down, when I whittle it into a single breath, it essentially comes out like this: before I die, I want to be somebody’s favorite hiding place, the place they can put everything they need to survive, every secret, every solitude, every nervous prayer, and be absolutely certain I will keep it safe. I will keep it safe. ~Andrea Gibson
    Jesus was more brokenhearted, scarred and betrayed than anyone in history. Yet, He did not shut Himself off from us; Instead, He calls us unto Him. If you cannot trust anyone, right now, please trust Him. His scars are proof that you are loved more than you know. He will guide you through this pain, He will sit with you when you are weak, and He will carry you until you can walk again. Christ wants to see you run again, He wants to see you live in His glory. You just have to take His hand and walk; it will take all of you, but you will get all of Him. He is worth it. ~T.B. LaBerge
    We should ask God to increase our hope when it is small, awaken it when it is dormant, confirm it when it is wavering, strengthen it when it is weak, and raise it up when it is overthrown. ~John Calvin 
    God created the universe with His life giving breath; Jesus saved the whole of creation with His final breath. It seems only fitting that we be willing to praise Him with all the breath we can give. ~T.B. LaBerge
    Oh, the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person, having neither to weigh thoughts nor measure words, but pouring them all out, just as they are, chaff and grain together, certain that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and with a breath of kindness blow the rest away. ~George Eliot
    I’ll be honest with you, I’m a little bit of a loner. It’s been a big part of my maturing process to learn to allow people to support me. I tend to be very self-reliant and private. And I have this history of wanting to work things out on my own and protect people from what’s going on with me. ~Kerry Washington