I am not one who makes New Year's resolutions. Usually, when I need to make a change in my life, I come to point where the benefits of change outweigh the inconvenience of change. Either way it has little to do with flipping the dates on the calendar. Having said that, whatever motivates us to make positive change in our lives is a good thing -- if the calendar does it for you then good for you.
I have reached the point on my spiritual journey where it is definitely time to make some changes. I've been reading a lot and praying and thinking over the past few months. I have followed a routine for the past 8 years, trying to live a rhythm in my spiritual life. I have tried to spend a half an hour a day in bible reading and prayer. A day a month with my covenant brothers and a week a year on retreat. What I have found is that the above routine is no longer enough and that, for my own personal spiritual growth, it has become time to take the next step forward.
A balanced spiritual life needs balance in all of my life. I choose to work harder on my key relationships. I choose to work more intentionally on my intellectual and thought life. I am choosing to be even more intentional about improving my physical health and stamina. Life (and ministry) is a marathon and, like St. Paul wrote long before me, I will be more intentional about my training regimen.
The plan? There has to be a plan: 1) I will stick to the half hour + for daily bible reading and prayer. 2) I will add a hour a day for reading that will stretch and challenge my mind. 3) I will more intentionally work to build and develop the key relationships in my life -- paying closer attention, listening, setting up times to meet. 4) I Once the blizzard of 2014 goes away I'll get back to the gym while renewing my vigil on the fuel I am putting in my body.
So, not a New Year's resolution . . . but a commitment to change. The question I ask myself is this: "what do I want this life to look like a year from now?"