In the fall I preached at sermon at the Grove where I talked about not taking on a new year’s resolution that is performance based. It’s something that I struggle with all the time. I’m a driven guy and I can easily fall into the temptation of defining myself by achievements. Heck, in 2009, I’ve been given the opportunity to lead a church plant that is exploding in ministry and attendance, I’ve graduated my master’s program, and gotten ordained. It’s seriously been my most productive year ever. However, all of this is complete garbage if it takes the priority in my life that belongs to Christ. So, this sermon that I gave at The Grove was extremely meaningful in my own life. I’ve decided to completely eliminate performance based goals for 2010.
For instance, I was doing a read through the Bible in 90 days program…now I’m reading through the Bible because I love it. I was reading books at a fast rate so that I can be exposed to more and more ideas…now I am reading because I love it. I was exercising to meet physical goals…now I am because of its intrinsic benefits. I was blogging regularly to keep people reading, now I’m not.
It sounds so silly to write it down, but this is a huge shift for me. I actually took a month off my blog (which I’ve been doing regularly for like 6 or 7 years) to help myself to not care. I’ve decided to, instead of developing performance based goals for the year, to set up guidelines or priorities for myself. In a way they are still performance based and task oriented, but I am trying to avoid the goal setting parts and make my resolutions work for me instead of me working for my resolutions). I have a feeling this is going to be long…
So here’s the dilly, yo,
- I am going to read through the Bible. Pastors have got to read through their Bibles at least once every year. I’m reading through the ESV. With Zondervan basically admitting to the ineptness of the NIV, I am gladly looking at the ESV as a possible replacement for our church.
- I am going to be home for my kids. In my last couple years in youth ministry I was away about 4 nights a month and working like crazy to run a youth ministry, find a replacement for myself and plant a brand new church. It was a source of canker sores for me (my body’s way of telling me it’s stressed out) and horrible for my kids. I’ve always said that pastors have got to change situations that are ill for their families and now I’ve lived it. So, this year I am very intentional about being present for my family.
- I’m going to finish the coaching network that I am in. I am being coached my Nelson Searcy and will continue this until July-ish. This means reading assigned books and participation in other learning activities. This will be the only reading that I do because I have to.
- I will be blogging less. Blogging is not the most effective way that God has given me to share content. Now, I am preaching for 45+ minutes on a weekly basis. If people want to know what God is doing in my life and through me you can go to http://www.albanygrove.com. Part of this, I am going to be keeping a personal journal. I’ve never done this before, but it is feeling good to do for my soul.
- I’m going to pray that the Grove goes through the 250 growth barrier. For a long time I’ve been praying for our little church to grow in members. It’s happening fast and I am praying that this continues. The Grove is full of the most amazing Christians you’ll find around – and what is in store for us…God only knows!
- Finally, I’m going to physically exercise often and enjoyably. Planting a church put 25 pounds on me. That’s probably not healthy. I’m going to give it back. If only I could find the receipt…