Well, 2013 is half over already! Each slips by a little faster than the previous one, it seems.
It's been a while since I've posted anything about personal goals. I had mentioned that my word for 2013 was "discipline." I knew at the start of the year that discipline was a key area that require focus this year, and it has been the case.
For the first 3 months of the year, I focused on self-discipline through exercise. Six days a week, for 30 minutes per day, I exercised by fast walking / jogging on the treadmill. I did not necessarily see any physical results of this exercise (weight loss, more energy, etc), but I did feel better emotionally. My self-image became more positive. And eventually, as the exercise routine became routine, I looked forward to the time. I used that time on the treadmill to read my Bible, to pray, to practice my scripture memory verses. It became enjoyable.
Then in early April, I became pregnant. With a high-risk pregnancy, exercise is not encouraged. So I stopped exercising and began resting more (which is what my doctors and my body said I needed). Now that I'm into my second trimester of pregnancy, exercise is optional - I am encouraged to do whatever little I can do. And I do have more energy, so I'm getting outside more, talking short walks, etc. But overall, the self-disciple of exercise has had to halt for now.
There is another area, though, that I have continued throughout the year and I'm quite proud of the results - Scripture memory. My friend Leah wanted to hop on board with Ann Voskamp's Romans Project for 2013 and I joined her. I have never memorized large portions of Scripture, just a few verses here and there. The idea of memorizing 3 whole chapters of the Bible is daunting, but I knew it was a challenge worth pursuing. Here we are, months later, having Romans chapter 1 memorized and down pat. We're a little ways into Romans 8. And I'm doing it! I feel like jumping up and down because this is something new to me, something I've never done. Some Christian kids are part of Bible quizzing teams, where they memorize large portions of scripture and compete against each other to see who can recall certain verses the fastest. I never did anything like that. I've never considered myself to be the kind of person who could do that (to which my husband replies: exactly what kind of person do you think it takes to be that kind of person? I don't know!) but God is giving me strength and perseverance. And I love it!
Just like the smaller passage or verses I've committed to memory before, God brings these new verses to mind at just the right times, applying them to new situations. I'm so thankful for the challenge from Ann Voskamp and from my friend Leah. And so we press on through the rest of Romans 8 and then into Romans 12.
So, discipline is my word for 2013. There may still be other ways God wants to use discipline in my life this year, but I've highlighted the 2 ways that have been clear so far.
My life is better, more enjoyable because of discipline. 2013 is proving to be an exciting year of change, for the better!