I can’t believe we are a month into 2016! I’ve deemed 2016 the year of flourishing. Keeping that word front and center (along with my theme verses Psalm 1:1-3) has been the encouragement I’ve needed to thrive in every season. God is teaching me so much lately but a theme that keeps coming up is the idea that “You can’t do it all, and do it all well.” or as my friend Lara says “If it matters to you, cultivate it”.
An abundant, flourishing life begins with taking a hard look at what is in your life and letting go of the control. Digging deep into what matters most to me makes room for others to use their gifts and shine.
January Goal Update
- Join #NancyRayBookClub and read “How to Win Friends and Influence People”
-I’ll be honest, out of the 12 books “How to Win Friends and Influence People” was the one I was least excited to read. Boy, was I in for a shocker. Dale Carnige’s quick with and tell it like it is point of view is refreshing. My number one take away has been to notice people & be truly present. We are ALL in the business of people, and a little bit of thought and kindness goes a long way. If you want to learn more about Nancy’s book club, visit nancyrayphotography.com
2. Contentment Challenge-Month One
This is my second time doing a contentment challenge. I’ve learned that having a larger goal (saving for a home of my own) does wonders to help with my discipline. There are countless small things I’m now willing to sacrifice to save for a bigger reward. God is doing a work in my heart teaching this target-loving girl that joy and contentment is found in Him not in things.
One thing though, giving gifts are my love language and I’ve allotted an amount in my budget to support hand-made businesses and love on my friends. It’s all about grace not perfection friends!
3. Fill out prayer journal.
Preparation is key here. My small group shares prayer requests every week but I’ve set a reminder in my planner at the end of each month to purposefully text/call friends and family to see how I can pray for them.
I’ve also began doing an “Alphabet Prayer” (using the alphabet as a prompting on what/who to pray for), it has been a great way to keep my mind free of distractions. Praying in the car and while washing dishes has become a new favorite habit.
4. Create a “Beat the Winter Blues Bucket List”
-This has been a life saver during our Wisconsin winter. See this post for more information 🙂
5. Plan Come Away Retreat for Small Group Ladies
We had an absolute blast playing games, exploring the woods, learning to knit and drinking countless cups of coffee. We ended the weekend with a heart to heart talk about the real meaning of rest and what it looks like to rest in Christ during the busyness of each day. More to come as God spoke to my heart through these ladies.
Create a daily and weekly workflow for ZA. (This habit has been life transforming!)
Intentional plan ZA garden with volunteers and team. (Yes, we involved the kids this year and it made the planning time that much more fruitful…Spring is coming friends)
Create a list of podcasts to listen to while I do administrative work. (Done, Nancy LeighDemoss’s series on Prayer has been a great encouragement to me)
- Read “Ordering Your Private World” by Gordon MacDonald and “Culture Making” by Andy Crouch
- Consistent, weekly writing time at Mission Cafe.
- Contentment Challenge Month #2.
- Turn off my phone on evenings off and read, rest, bible journal, pray. Find TRUE rest in Him.
- Prayerfully consider how to increase my saving and giving. GIVE. SAVE. LIVE.
- Delegate tasks to qualified volunteers who are passionate about using their unique gifts to serve
- Visit the YMCA on Tuesday/Thursdays with my workout buddy.
- Encourage a friend over coffee or a meal. Speak truth in love.
Cheers to a fruitful month!