Tuesday, January 01, 2013

Reflection and Preparation for New Year

Reflection and Preparation

The habit or practice of reflection has increased and become very important to me over the years. I have noticed people are running so fast and not taking the time to sit, think, review, remember and re-adjust their lifestyles and schedules. With some regular times of daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and annual reflection, it can lead to peace, stability and very purposeful living.

The following questions are to get us thinking about this past year and prepare us for “The Best Year Ever.” How am I doing in the major areas of my LIFE, MARRIAGE, FAMILY, WORK and CHURCH?

1.     LIFE
A.   Spirit:
1)    Psalm 1 - Am I DELIGHTING IN the Father and His Word day and night?
2)    John 15 - Am I ABIDING IN and staying connected to Jesus Christ?
3)    Galatians 5 - Am I WALKING IN and keeping in step with the Holy Spirit?
4)    What 3 “spiritual practices or habits” generated the greatest benefit?

B.    Soul:
1)    MIND
a)     What am I doing to daily renew my mind?
b)    Are my thoughts pure, lovely, noble, truthful, and full of praise?
c)     What are the best three books I read last year?
2)    WILL
a)     What kind of choices did I make last year?
b)    Did I choose the way of life versus death?
c)     Did I choose the way of the Spirit versus the way of the flesh?
d)    Did I choose to walk by faith versus walk by sight?
a)     Was I full of love, joy, peace, patience and self-control?
b)    Was there any guilt, greed or jealousy that needs to be resolved?
c)     Is there any anger or hurt that needs to be forgiven?

C.    Body (Did I live in B.A.L.A.N.C.E?)
1)    BREATHING  - Am I getting enough oxygen in my blood?
2)    AWARENESS - Am I aware of what is going on in my body?
3)    LIQUIDS - Am I drinking enough water?
4)    ANTIOXIDANTS  - Am I taking the right of Multi, C and E?
5)    NUTRITION – Am I eating 3-5 small meals of protein, carbs and good fats?
6)    CONDITIONING  - Am I exercising 3-5 times a week?
7)    EFFECTIVE REST  - Am I getting 7-8 hours of sleep?
8)    What three ways will I take better care of myself this next year?

A.   Intimacy
1)    Does my wife know she is the #1 priority relationship on the planet?
2)    Am I loving my wife as Christ loves the church?
3)    Are we praying together on a regular basis?
4)    Are we regularly sharing what we are learning from our own relationship with Jesus Christ?
5)    Am I washing and cleansing her with the Word of God?
6)    Am I carefully listening to her thoughts, feelings and desires?
7)    Are we enjoying many sexual and non-sexual touches?
8)    Are we enjoying romance and physical intimacy on a regular basis?
9)    Did we have an awesome anniversary celebration?
10) Have we enjoyed quarterly getaways?
11) Did we have our monthly MSM, Marriage Staff Meetings?
12) How was our “Weekly Focus” time?
13) Did I provide her the structure or spontaneity she needs and desires?
14) Did I give her the full and focused attention she deserves?
15) On a scale of 1-10, how would my wife rate our marriage?
16) What needs to be done to get it to a 10?

B.    Finances
1)    Did we honor the Lord with the first fruit of all our increase?
3)    Did we GIVE GENEROUSLY and cheerfully?
5)    Did we INVEST WISELY for the future?
7)    What financial adjustments must we make for this next year?

3.     FAMILY
A.   Father/Grandfather
1)    How am I doing as a Dad?
2)    Am I walking humbly before my children?
3)    Am I showing them unconditional love?
4)    What did I teach them this past year? What do they need to know?
5)    Am I a model to follow? Can I say, “Follow me as I follow Christ?”
6)    Am I spending the quality and quantity of time my children need?
7)    Am I praying for them on a daily basis?
8)    What “Etched Memories” did I create this past year?

B.    Son
1)    How am I doing as a son?
2)    How did I honor my Father and Mother this past year?

C.    Brother
1)    How am I doing as a brother?
2)    How did I love and care for my brothers and sisters?

4.     WORK
A.   Did I see my work as a gift from God?
B.    Did I do my work as unto the Lord?
C.    Am I living as a man under authority showing respect, gratefulness, a servant and quiet spirit?
D.   Am I showing excellence and diligence in my work?
E.    Am I taking the low place and trusting God for His invitations, appointments and exaltation in His time?
F.    Am I “choosing to cheat”?
G.   What three work relationships need more time?

5.     CHURCH
A.   Am I “Engaged” in my local church?
1)    Am I CONNECTED and living in community with other believers?
2)    Am I INVESTING and inviting other outsiders?
3)    Am I GIVING a percentage?
4)    Am I SERVING strategically?
B.    Where else am I using my gifts to touch the world?

Some additional questions:

6.     In reviewing last year, what areas reveal the most progress? The least progress?

Ø  Most –

Ø  Least -

7.     What is the wildest, most unconventional thing I could do this next year to live with more passion? What out of the box thinking could we do?

8.     Who will hold me accountable to be my best self this next year?

9.     The most significant way I will influence others is…

10.  List 3-5 of your best achievements this past year

11.  Strengths and Successes - Identify what has worked well this past year

12.  Struggles and Stresses - What has not been working so well?

13.  Habits - What are the most purposeful daily habits you could develop/upgrade over the next 12 months? Develop 1 habit at a time, not 2, not 5.

14.  Clutter - Clutter can be anything that is taking up room in my mind…for example we have 1000 AU’s (Attention Units) and anything from a sick relative, to a way ward child, to troublesome marriage, to bitterness can all take up mental and emotional capacity. We must un-clutter our minds so that we can reach full potential.

·      Identify 3 messes or clutter projects you’d like to clean up in the next 12 months?

15. Character - Proverbs 22:1 says, A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.

·      Identify 3 qualities you’d like to see associated with your name as well as how you would define each quality.