As the year 2011 comes to a close, I am preparing to fulfill an annual heart and mental exercise I like to do at the end of each calendar year. As with most people, I try to grab a few days of vacation/rest and travel to visit with family. This usually provides me with a few hours of drive time whereby I can usually take some time to think.
Part of this exercise relates to my need to reflect. I never want to close out a year without reflecting upon the following three things. First, I want to remind myself of God's faithfulness throughout the year. I need to pause and think through how God has showed up in love and grace throughout all of the events of year 2011. Secondly, I need to honestly reflect upon where I am at spiritually, emotionally and physically as the year closes. How am I feeling in each of these areas? What has been tested in each of these areas? An honest awareness of where you are at personally in all three is important. Finally, I need to honestly reflect upon where I am at relationally. How are the most important relationships in my life going? What tested those relationships throughout the year? What growth and great things took place in those relationships throughout the year? Again, an honest awareness of where I am at in my key relationships is important.
But I also am convinced I can't live in the past reflecting. I must also spend some time projecting and asking the Lord to help me set some concrete goals to pursue for the year in each of the areas mentioned above. I never want to grow stagnant in my life and will constantly look to the Lord for His leading in how to keep growing and becoming all that He would have me become while I have life to do so.
So, I am looking forward to some time out of the office to prayerfully reflect and project as 2011 comes to a close and 2012 launches.