Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Resolution Update

So now that it's the end of January, you may wonder how my new year's resolutions are going. So am I... I feel like I'm still in the process of working them out - after all, intentionality is certainly not an overnight process. I fear my resolution may take until the next new year! But I will update you on my progress, and the accountability may help me as well.

I have been spending less time on the internet, but I don't know if it's because I have less time to give it right now or because of actual intentionality on my part. There have certainly been times when all I've wanted to do is check my email or look up something or other but instead chose to walk by the computer and spend time with my kids, clean or cook, or fulfill some such duty that's listed under the vast responsibilities of Wife, Mother and Homemaker. I guess you could call that intentional on my part so... yeah for me!

I've picked up my most favorite Bible commentary and started reading it again at night, helping me to get back on track with a nightly devotion time. I feel like it's an accomplishment that I just finished the 'dry' book of Numbers (though not so dry when explained by my commentary - that's why I love it so!) and am now on to Deuteronomy. I'm also psyched that my weekly women's Bible study has started up again. I'm excited to be studying Beth Moore's new Esther study, and I believe this will get me into the Word more than anything right now. Past experience with Beth Moore studies have shown me that they're intense studies but are so worth the personal time and energy to get through them and see what God has in store for me and how He'll work in my life.

As far as resolution #3 - becoming intentional in my life with my duties as a homemaker, parent, teacher and wife - that's been a tough one too. Not only have I been dealing with sick children in the house, lack of sleep and cabin fever (thanks to the 4 feet of snow out my front door!), I've also just added one more body to the mix by starting care for my friend's newborn baby. I've got a lot on my plate, but I feel if I can get organized and better at meal planning, homeschooling, etc., this will make life easier in the long run. One of my dear friends pointed me to an intentional planner online which I quickly bought and downloaded as I feel I need all the help I can get. I'm still in the process of tweaking it and applying it to my daily life, but there is hope. There is always hope!

My prayer life falls last, but certainly not least, on my list of resolutions. In the past, I'd been pretty good at conversing with God throughout the day as one would carry on a coversation with a friend/parent. But as each gift from God (in the form of a little babe) would arrive on our doorstep, it got harder to communicate with anybody in flesh and blood, never mind, in the spirit. I feel I always have an awareness of God and His presence in my life, but frankly, my prayer life could use a makeover. Harkening back to the blog I spoke of in my last entry (the "reckless experiment with prayer" blog), I was inspired by the idea of structuring my schedule around my prayer times. Now I haven't been successful at this at all, however I have stumbled upon the Catholic website Universalis which gives each day's Liturgy of the Hours. This has been helpful in making me more aware of giving my prayer life more structure and routine, and it certainly hasn't done any harm in that I'm methodically going through the Psalms each day (well, at least the days I remember to do it). Not being Catholic, I can still appreciate the well-intentioned custom of worshipping God morning, noon and night with beautiful hymns, psalms and verses as well as the benedictions of various saints.

Becoming intentional is the single hardest discipline I can think of because essentially it's all about becoming disciplined in discipline. It's like saying I'm going to try to become a more positive person by being happier more often. I guess it's also like saying I'm going to try to be a better Christian by not being such a sinner. Without God, this is impossible; with Him, we as sinners become saints and the undisciplined become disciplined. Lord, I'm going to need a lot of help this year!
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