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Three Foundational Goals for 2018, and One More

You’ll just have to imagine the beautiful sparkles with which God decorated the tree, sparkles that glittered when the wind passed by.

In the wee hours of this morning, eating a banana in the dark while watching the moon, Jupiter, and Mars creep through the bare branches of our basswood tree, I thought of Psalm 8.  When David admired the night sky, probably while out with his sheep, he asked, “What is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor….”  God has given us all things to care for, and we praise his majestic name in all the earth.

That psalm gives some perspective to the human practice of setting goals.  We are not autonomous but depend on God for every breath, we have each been given specific tasks, and our overriding goal must be to love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength and our neighbor as ourselves.  Within those very, very broad outlines, with the whole world spread before us, we can choose a few things to focus on this year and call those our goals

I’ve been thinking a lot about human fragility and purpose in the past weeks, and all my thoughts seem to group into three very foundational areas where I want to be more intentional in 2018.

Knowing God

I want to get closer to God, to know him better, and to understand more clearly how he wants me to live.  Despite having aimed, for years, to love him with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength, I am often still not sure what that means in everyday terms.  So this year I want to do three things that will help.

  • I plan to read the entire Bible this year, taking notes and copying out sections to memorize.
  • For prayer guidance I’m using the devotional Seeking God’s Face.
  • For worship I want to focus more on God’s magnificent creation that we busy inside-dwellers so often ignore.

Regaining Health

As many of you know, I often deal with fatigue, extreme lack of stamina, and other health issues.  Although I have had incredible medical support over the past decade, something more needs to be done, and this year I expect to focus on

  • More medical testing,
  • More learning,
  • More intentionality with regards to eating, being active, and resting.

Loving my Family

I have a wonderful family and am grateful for each person, but I have not always expressed that adequately.  This year I hope to spend more time just hanging out with each of them, doing things together, little things and, once I am well, bigger ones, too.

Catching Up

There are a few things sitting on my shoulders that I want to get out of the way—homeschool records, writing projects, homemaking issues, photo organization, managing my working space (see photo below), and more.  This fourth goal is based on the foundational three and will feed into them, but it deserves a special mention so I will not forget about it. However, I will do my best not to let it interfere with the other three which are all much more important.

My plan is to break each of these goals into monthly and weekly subgoals to make them practical and do-able, and I expect to blog about that at least a few times over the year.

Miss 15 said I should include this photo of my desk so no one will think I have it all together—and believe me, I don’t! But isn’t it good to know that God always does?

Last Year’s Goals

I set some pretty ambitious goals last year, to memorize Romans, to get back to walking 10,000 steps a day, and to keep up with the wee notes I scribble to myself in the night.

I did not meet any of my 2017 goals, but trying to memorize Romans was a life changer in ways I never expected—I now understand more about God, others, myself, and the rest of the Bible.  I also learned about memorizing, big projects, and being over 50.

Here is a suggestion for you younger moms: take advantage of your youthful minds and attempt such a Bible memorization project.  Even if you do not succeed, I promise you won’t be sorry you tried.  No matter how old we are, the more we memorize God’s Word, the more it will fill our minds when we lie awake at night, see a starry sky, need to make a decision, or are about to lose our tempers….

Did you set goals for the year?  If you have a blog post about them, please include a link in the comments.  How are they working out so far?  Don’t be afraid to tweak and adjust, and do be sure to translate them into daily or weekly actions.  May God bless you and your family in 2018!

If you enjoyed this article, you might want to follow me on Google+ where I often mention helpful or interesting ideas, or connect with me on GoodReads where I share what I read. 


  1. Thank you for this post and the photo! I have the same problem with overflowing books.
    ” Despite having aimed, for years, to love him with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength, I am often still not sure what that means in everyday terms. “-yes, it is often so easy not to know how to translate belief into practice and even when doing what we know Biblically to be right, for us not to feel that we are in the right place often because of dissatisfaction or tiredness. Being busy too, often pushes out the right reflection of why we are doing what we are and worshiping as we go about our daily life.

    1. Annie Kate says:

      When I told Miss 15 how you loved the photo, she was very pleased. 🙂

      So many books, so much to think about, so many things that I need to learn to be able to discuss with people who need to talk about things….

      Yet, it is the Bible that is foundational to all of it. But tiredness, busyness, and dissatisfaction can make all the difference in our application of the Bible, as you pointed out. Thank you!

  2. Wonderful goals! I have not set anything in stone this year. If I did it would be much the same as always… be more like Jesus, don’t waste time, pray more. Thank Miss 15 for the picture. It is good to see someone else is “human”! Happy New Year, friend.

    1. Annie Kate says:

      Oh, Jenn, you are always such a good example to me! Thank you for your friendship over the years.

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