New Beginnings

January always feels like a new beginning for me . When I was teaching it was a new semester full of new units, new plans, maybe more mature 8th graders? My optimistic nature hoped for the best.

My resolution for the past two years has been one word: Mercy and Lean. Ann Voskamp’s SOULutions plan for 2016 gives me a totally different process to improve myself in several ways. You can find her original post and a free printable here.

She uses verbs and blanks for you to complete however you see fit. Look at this list:

  • Embrace
  • Engage
  • Be
  • Believe
  • Break
  • Do
  • Let
  • Learn
  • Live
  • Give
  • Grow

She also provides her own choices with some explanation in typical Ann-poetic phrases.

I left out one of the essential words because I’ve developed her Daily 3 for 10 into my own plan. She suggests the Daily 3 as Word In, Work out, and Work plan for ten minutes each. Since our church is reading the New Testament this year, my Word In Plan begins with Matthew using the 1st Five app from Proverbs31 Ministry. First5LogoPng

My Daily Plan of Quiet Moments (my favorite time is morning) includes several different practices but with the 10 minute time limit. When I become engrossed in one of the practices on my list, I lose track of time and neglect something else. I’m using the timer on my phone to remind me when to stop.

My Daily Plan 

  1. Give thanks: journal
  2. Word In: Matthew, 1st Five website
  3. Prayer and Meditation: using the 31 Days of Prayer
  4. Becoming a Better Writer: Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg 

I’ve framed my plan and put in my bathroom – a place I will look everyday. I’ll change its location since anything can become “wallpaper” after awhile.2016Okab

My writing goals this year include blogging more regularly (at least twice a week) and complete the book I’m writing. I’m near the end of the first draft and will soon begin the huge task of revising and editing. In case you don’t remember, this book begins with the death of our daughter in 2002 and follows my journey of grief.

Ann’s plan inspired me to reach beyond my typical goals and stretch myself. Have you found a plan that works for you?


Today I am thankful for 

  • resources online for Bible study and encouragement
  • new beginnings



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