7 Steps to Launching a Tremendous New Year

photo by bruno nascimento-

photo by bruno nascimento-

Can you believe 2019 is right around the corner? Neither can I! Time sure flies (whether you’re having fun or not).

I was recently reminded of some words of wisdom particularly when you are looking at a daunting goal. Start working on that daunting goal even if it takes years to accomplish. After all, the time will go by anyway.

That’s so true, isn’t it? So, let’s make 2019 a tremendous year!

7 Steps to Launching a Tremendous New Year

  1. Decide what it is that you want.

    That may sound pretty elementary, but you’ll never reach a goal unless you know exactly what it is that you want.

    Get a clear vision. Picture it; write it down; be very specific.

  2. Eat healthy.

    This is not about dieting. It’s about fueling your body to be the best it can be. The only way to leave sluggishness and fatigue behind is to feed your physical body healthy foods.

    Develop the mindset of “eating to live” rather than “living to eat”.

  3. Move your body.

    I wish I could tell you that the human body doesn’t need exercise, but it does. We don’t have to train for a marathon but we do have to move.

    Depending on where you are physically, start making small changes to get you moving. Walk more, take the stairs, start a stretching program; just do more than you are doing now.

    Getting our body more physically fit gives us more energy and stimulates our endorphins making us happier beings.

    (You should see your doctor before starting an exercise program.)

  4. Set realistic goals.

    Yes, we do want to stretch for our goals, but we are also motivated by achievement, so be realistic.

    There’s no way one will lose 100 pounds in a month so don’t set that type of goal. You can lose 2- 5 pounds in a month; that’s a realistic goal.

  5. Break your goal down into action steps.

    How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

    Goals are the same way. We can’t just say that we are going to lose “X” number of pounds without an action plan.

    Decide how you are going to do that. Eating a certain number of calories per day, exercising, using portion sizes, meal planning and the action steps can go on.

  6. Track your progress.

    I had a boss once who always said “What is expected must be inspected to make it happen.” He was absolutely right!

    If weight loss is your goal, track your progress. Track what you eat each day. Track how much you move each day. And lastly, track the scales, but once a week or once a month is usually best. Daily weighing often sabotages weight loss because our weight naturally fluctuates daily.

  7. Practice gratitude.

    This should probably be the first on the list. So often we forget that we have much for which to be grateful.

    I recommend this practice whether you set goals or not. Gratitude alone is a great way to improve every year, month, week and day!

    Makes this a DAILY HABIT! It will change your life.

I’m looking forward to the new year! I hope you are, too. Some people break their annual goals into quarterly and/or month goals to better track their progress and determine their action steps. Do what works for you!

5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
    and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
    and he will make straight your paths.

Proverbs 3:5-6

Comment below on what works for you!

- Wendy

Early in the Morning | Plus Canvas discount code

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I took the above photo while on a trip to Hot Springs, AR with a friend.  That is Lake Hamilton at sunrise.  It was a very relaxing and renewing few days.

My friend has been a Southern Baptist missionary in Africa most of her adult life. She and her husband were home on furlough when she and I took this get away trip.  It was fabulous!  We agreed to have supper together and enjoy one another’s company in the evenings, but the mornings and afternoons we retreated away alone to seek the Lord.

We took time to have our own person devotions and quiet time with the Lord in the mornings.  She would go to one part of the house we stayed in and I went to the other.  We seldom saw each other in the morning. We usually took breaks at the same time for lunch so we shared our lunch meals together.  Then we would retreat back to our personal quiet space until evening. During this time we would seek God’s guidance for particular areas of our lives and work on goal and plans.

It was funny that every morning we each walked around the neighborhood, but neither of us realized the other was walking until we talked about our days.  I’m telling you, we seldom saw each other in the mornings.  Of course, the first morning I slept in (I won’t say how late – I was ashamed of myself). That must have meant that I needed the rest, right? 

I’m telling you, I would love to do this a couple of times a year.  It was great to spend uninterrupted time with Jesus and to pull away from the business of life to focus on Him and His direction for my life.

When I looked back over my photos from the trip, this one really caught my attention.  I was reminded that we truly are without excuse.  After all, the heavens declare the glory of God. So I looked up the verse, added it to my photo and found canvasdiscount.com to have the canvas made. 

I love how that one turned out so much that I had several other photos printed on canvas. If you want to check it out for yourself, just click on the link below. Plus recieve 15% off your order of $30 or more if you use this link:

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope you and yours have a very special day planned tomorrow!  If not, plan it now.  No, you don’t have to go somewhere or even have the traditional Thanksgiving meal. What I’m talking about is being thankful!

Every year, my family will gather around a Thanksgiving meal and read aloud things that we are thankful for.  We try to do at least 10 each.  We stop at 10 each only so we can get to other fun things together.

I usually print out little slips that read like this:

I am thankful for _________________________________________________________.

These all go in a jar or bowl and we pass them around so each one of us can pull out one at a time to read aloud. We don’t sign the slips because part of our fun is guessing who wrote which one.  Of course some are easier to figure out than others.  For example, we know “I am thankful for deer season” comes from Dad!

You know we cover all the obvious things like family and friends and certain material things.  We all feel compelled to list “salvation” as our top item that we are thankful.  (That is definitely something for which I am thankful!) But usually there is something each year that just floors us. Invariably, someone will write a deep note about one thing they are thankful that takes us all by surprise.  I just love those moments!

So if you are looking for a tradition to start for Thanksgiving, give the “I’m thankful for” idea a try.  You just might be surprise at what you hear!

“We give thanks to God always for all of you, making mention of you in our prayers” I Thessalonians 1:2

Shield of Faith

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I don't know about you but some days I feel like all I do is dodge those arrows!  Thanks be to our Saviour and King, Jesus Christ, for that shield of faith!

So what is faith?

 "Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not                           seen." Hebrews 11:1

In this war (that's already won!), we must guard our hearts with the shield of faith.  How do we do that?

  • We must exercise our faith by trusting our Lord.
    • Believing He is Who He says He is
    • Believing He can/will do what He says He can/will do
    • We must study the Bible, His word, so we know His ways.
    • We must measure everything we want, do or say by His word and adjust our thoughts and actions to His standard
    • We must remember that NOTHING (NO THING) is impossible with God
    • We must choose faith

Choosing faith is no easy task at times. But the choice is ours none the less. When we learn that we have been crucified with Christ and it is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me; therefore, the choice is a given.  Choose to faith Jesus!

 "I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me."   Galatians 2:20"

Jesus gave Himself up for me (and you, believer) so that we could have eternal life in Him.  That life starts at salvation.  So as you take up your shield of faith, be reminded that we may not always understand His ways.  And that's OK because His ways are higher than our ways.  It's our privilege to follow after Jesus.  Wherever He leads, we're to follow Him.

"For we walk by faith, not by sight." — 2 Corinthians 5:7

Yes, I know we like to see the path before us, but He doesn't always show us the entire path.  So take up your shield of faith and start marching!

The Armor of God

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.13 Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.14 Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and havingput on the breastplate of righteousness,15 and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;16 in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18 With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints,          Ephesians 6:10-18