How to Move Into a New Year With Courage and Confidence
Let’s begin with the small picture before we think about facing a new decade with confidence.
Have you ever come to the end of a year feeling you’d accomplished nothing? I have. Trying to figure out what went wrong, I learned the adage is true.
“If you aim for nothing, you hit it every time.”
Ouch! I had drifted through the year because I failed to take time to set down specific goals. Rather than throw my hands up in despair, I chose to look at my journal. Where did I struggle or grow? I celebrated my victories!
But those failures? Because I failed, I believed I was a failure. But that isn’t true. The Lord calls you and I Beloved. Never failure.
It’s okay to fail. Why? Because that is how we grow and become stronger. Failure is a springboard to develop confidence and courage.
After that step, I dreamed; then wrote what I wanted to happen in my life during the New Year. Goals bring clarity. They also give direction to help focus on what’s important.
You can move into a New Year with courage and confidence. Keep reading, or jump to the bottom for the video.
Let me clarify.
Goals are not New Year’s resolutions.
Resolutions have no substance. Really. Do you know anyone who sticks with their resolutions more than 2 weeks?
Resolutions encourage legalism, not growth. The law results in failure.
Goals include specific dreams and desires God has given you have authority to make happen. But let’s be honest. Goals require intentionality and diligence to attain.
You ask how goals are different from resolutions? A resolution says, “I will read my Bible for half an hour every day!” Sounds good. I hate to be the bearer of bad news but no one succeeds under law.
A goal acknowledges habits already in place. It flourishes where there is a foundation.
It says: “While I sip my early morning coffee (water, tea), I will try to read my Bible for a couple of minutes.”
This is attainable. You have a foundation already established. It isn’t about law – win or lose; it’s about grace! Try this. You will be amazed at how faithful you become in daily Bible reading.
You have hopes and dreams. What are they? Put them into words and then write them down. Ask yourself, “How can I see my desires become a reality?”
Remember. Goals encourage grace. Accomplishing a goal promotes courage and confidence.
If I don’t write something down, I forget it. Until the middle of the night, when I obsess about it, which opens the door to the enemy to harass me.
To be proactive, I need to move out of passivity, so I write about it. Then I entrust it to the Lord, which brings peace of mind. In the morning, my notes are a reminder of my chat with the Lord and encourage me to take action.
How do you be an overcomer?
Get yourself a journal.
Write down goals for your personal life, your job, your health, your walk with the Lord. Be specific.
Ask the Lord for action steps to attain that desire.
Write those down.
Some dreams demand long-term commitment. That’s where the decade comes in.
If you have journaled over the last decade, or kept a daytimer – go back and look at them. Have a pad of paper and a pen and notate triumphs and failures.
What brought you joy? What caused anguish? It’s amazing but you will see patterns form as you write the highlights and lowlights of your year.
Give yourself permission to laugh, to sing, to weep. Some things require you to take time to grieve. It may mean you have to go to someone to ask their forgiveness. Or bow in humility before the Lord. Seek His cleansing and healing touch.
It’s important to take action.
Step 1: Gather your daytimers from 2010 through 2019.
Step 2: On a separate pad, write significant things that happened. Your struggles. Victories. Difficult people encountered. Failures.
Step 3: Look for patterns.
Step 4: Where did you struggle? Thank the Lord for He was with you through it all.
Where did you see victories? Thank the Lord for His faithfulness.
What lessons can you learn about yourself?
Step 5: Be Proactive.
Buy a journal or a composition book, or open a file on your computer to journal in 2020.
Be intentional. It’s good to journal daily, but give yourself grace. Journaling is to bless you, not to burden you.
Begin by writing what you learned from your review of the last ten years.
Jot down specific things you long to see implemented in your life. Make those your goals for 2020.
There is no right way or wrong way to journal. The important thing is to begin!
Your goals are important. Why? Because you are important! Your dreams matter. Your life has infinite value. There is a task only you can accomplish on this earth.
It all begins with taking the first step. Take time to journal. Then just take one step at a time allowing Christ to be your strong foundation so you become strong and courageous.
Remember, my dear Friend. You are of infinite value. And today is the first day of the rest of your life!
Some dreams demand long-term committment.
Be proactive. Be intentional.