In January 2019, I wrote a blog post titled, When God Gives You Abundantly More, as a reflection on 2018—and I was awed by all that God had done in just one year. I hadn’t dreamt big enough.
So, I trusted Him for more in 2019. Bigger things. And still… Still. I didn’t dream big enough because somehow, God did exceedingly abundantly more—once again proving He is able. (Ephesians 3:20)
On January 1, 2019, I posted two lists on social media: my adventure goals and my spiritual goals. While the spiritual list was non-negotiable, I expected that I wouldn’t do everything on my adventure list. What I didn’t expect were the things I did instead. Things I didn’t even imagine putting on that list a year ago!
The biggest surprise was God asking me to leave Florida and move to Tennessee. It was a BIG ask. I loved Florida. But, I felt an instant peace about that decision the moment I said YES to God.
I gave Him my goals, plans, hopes, and He gave me more. Exceedingly abundantly more. In 2019, I embraced the opportunities God allowed in my life and adventured far more than I thought I would.
Here’s that January 1, 2019 list of adventure goals (and how they turned out):
And here’s my January 1, 2019 list of spiritual goals:
As you can see, there are no checkboxes next to my spiritual goals. My relationship with God is an ongoing process of growth – because God doesn’t demand perfection; He only asks for progress. And honestly, life is so much more than checked boxes, even on the adventure side. The life I lived last year was still more than I expected—and I’m grateful to God for taking my dreams and somehow making the reality better. Exceedingly abundantly better.
This is what my 2019 really looked like:
In between these highlights, I enjoyed lots of everyday adventures. Time with family and friends, hiking, exploring Knoxville, and even normal things like grocery shopping and walks around the neighborhood. 2019 was a good year, and I’m grateful to have lived it!
I’m also dreaming big(ger) for this new year. Here’s a peek at my goals lists so far…
- New Orleans—planned for February 2020 (work trip)
- Utah & Zion National Park—planned for March 2020
- Germany, Liechtenstein, and Austria—planned for March 2020
- Hike Mt. LeConte in the Smokies
- Axe throwing & paintball
- Thailand and Vietnam OR Japan
- Christmas markets in Europe—Prague, Budapest, ???
- Volunteer faithfully at church
- Join a church small group
- Continue what I started in 2019. I want 2020 to be another year of saying YES to God and NO to self. Last year, I wasn’t perfect at doing this, but I did make progress.
- Continue staying out of His way, pursuing Him above all else, and letting go of ANYTHING that:
- is not adding value to my life.
- is not encouraging or edifying others.
- is keeping me from being used by God.
I’m not normally one to choose a word of the year—although last year I chose a verse of the year for the first time ever. Actually, three verses: Hebrews 12:1-3. But, a word of the year? Nope. Haven’t picked one in the past. This year, though, I want to focus more intentionally on progress, not perfection. On taking one step at a time and celebrating what I AM doing instead of dwelling on what I didn’t do. So that’s my word: PROGRESS.
Regardless of whether you choose a word or make a list, I hope 2020 is a year of abundance and progress for you, too!