I’m dusting off my “pen” for a challenge for the year. My friend Mandy for the past few years has picked a word for the year. I think she got the idea from someone else, and has been spreading the idea through her blog. [Update: the word for the year thing started with Ali Edwards, a scrapbooking/art/creative blogger.] It’s been a way to learn about something, focus on something for the year.
I had an unofficial word for the year last year, in that I picked a word but never publicly discussed it. My word was discipline. How exciting, I know! It wasn’t magical or anything, but I was amazed how much it came up in my Bible reading, in Bible study, in random things I read online, even in some classes I took. I won’t bore you with all that I learned, but the most important thing I learned is that discipline brings freedom. My natural tendency is to think of the opposite. I’m also very sloooooow at implementing things in my life, so I plan to continue dealing with discipline in 2010.
My word for this year is the title of the post: balance. I’m always thinking I need more balance in my life. It seems like I sometimes have a one-track mind. Whatever is most pressing on my “to-do list” (I put that in quotes because I rarely have a written list, but there is a long list in my mind) gets my full attention. I wish things could be a little less stressful and a little more peaceful, and some balance seems to need to be in order. But, I also wonder if balance is really something worth striving for. I mean, it sounds all nice, kind of warm and fuzzy, but life isn’t always so predictable or simple. Is it even possible to have a life that is completly balanced? And is that really what God wants from me?
I’ve been drawn to these verses lately: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
I suspect this verse will be key in discovering what God wants from my life … finding rest in Him, taking on the work He has for my life (His yoke) and learning from Him.
This leads to my other pursuit of the year, which is to read through the entire Bible. I’ve never done this. I am determined to do it this year. I’ve tried before and given up. I think my motives were wrong before. It was more of a checklist thing. Something I could cross off my “what good Christians should do” list. It was also an information gathering mission in the past, simply to obtain head knowledge. My desire this time is to simply know God. To let Him speak to me through His Word.
And, I’m not going to get hung up in the fact that I’m already a day behind! ha ha! January 1st was spent battling a stomach virus. Ugh! The plan I’m using is from The Discipleship Journal, and it has 25 readings per month, so there are days built in to catch up or do further study. Each day’s reading has a reading from the Gospels, another book in the New Testament, a Psalm or Proverb, and the Old Testament. It provides some variety, which is nice when treading through some of the Old Testament.
So, here we go 2010! I’m excited to jump in!