Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!!















Here they are...my resolutions for 2009!!

[what's brewing: too much steam]

I often feel that the demands of ministry here draw out every ounce of emotional strength that I have. This turns me into a very emotionally volatile and easily angered woman at the end of the day when I reach the privacy of my own home. I have been shocked by my own capacity for anger and some of the hurtful responses (usually directed toward Jason) that come out of me when I'm feeling so depleted. This year, I am resolving to address this issue in the following ways:


1 – To develop new skills for managing my emotions when I’m feeling so depleted. I know that this requires finding new ways of drawing upon God’s strength to respond in ways that don't come naturally to my sinful nature.


2 – To spend some time each week doing things that fill my emotional tank up so that I can take the edge off of the depleted state that almost always precedes my unwarranted responses.


3 – To address the negativity that lurks within my heart throughout the day by developing a habit of thanking God for his grace and patience with me when I am critical and impatient of things going wrong differently than I had expected or desired.


Earlier this week Grammy commented on the need for accountability with goals and resolutions, and I think she’s absolutely right. Declaring these things publicly to you all feels like a significant step towards addressing this area of my life, and you can expect progress reports from me as we go along. If any of you could use the support and encouragement of sharing your focus for 2009 and giving updates as we go along, please let us know what you’re working on and then jump in with your progress updates as I post mine.


May this be a year of great learning as we rely upon the Lord to carry us through, not to 2010, but through each moment of each day that we are given. His mercies truly are new every morning and I am confident that He will carry us safely through the deep and difficult waters that may lie ahead as we seek to understand who we are in Him.

8 comments:

angiewashington.com said...

Coffeegirl, Those are some very thoughtful and highly attainable resolutions. Good for you!

The idea of accountability is a great idea.

In the past my resolutions have focused on character or habits. This year I am focusing more on accomplishments. Here are my top three:

- Finish reading through the Bible in Spanish
- Write more (participate in NaNoWriMo)
- Complete the adoption of our new daughter

I appreciate that you are sharing your heart with us. I was wondering if I might ask you to fill in some blanks for me. If you have a profile on facebook or something like that where these questions are answered then I could go there if you point me in the right direction. On the other hand, if you are choosing not to reveal this information I am curious as to why; I'd really like to understand. Forgive me, please, if I am being to forward. Ok, so here go my questions: We know that your husband is Jason; what is your first name? We know that you are learning Spanish (if I am not mistaken); what country are you serving in? We know that you are fairly newly married; how old are you? Do you have a personal blog that we could follow outside of this one?

Again, I really appreciate that you are taking us in this journey with you and I admire you for sharing so clearly what you are going through. You have given your life to serve Christ and this is high calling indeed. Thank you for responding with, "Here am I."

With much love and wishes for a happy new year,
Angie

Shilo said...

Happy 2009, Coffeegirl! Thanks so much for your transparency and willingness to open up your heart to the community of missionary women. You are a blessing.
What you shared reminded me so much about our first move overseas. We had been there about 4 months, I think, maybe 6 months maximum. My hubby was definitely experiencing culture stress (especially as related to standing in lines and the inability to "accomplish" much in any given day). I, on the other hand, didn't feel those frustrations and loved our new home. But I found myself very frustrated with my husband and often was rude or angry with him! It took me a couple of weeks to realize what was going on! I was processing culture stress differently than he did and it came out in a VERY unattractive, unhealthy way.
I don't share that to make excuses for myself or you, but just to say you're not alone.
Ultimately, I love how God puts us in situations where He reveals more of our true character and gives us the chance to become more like HIM.
Blessings to you!
Shilo

Becky Aguirre said...

I highly relate to this post and almost feel as if it could have been written for me! It's actually kinda neat to have it down in words because now maybe I can approach it in my own life a bit better. :) I look forward to reading how God is teaching you in these areas...and maybe I'll have some things to share, too.

Ellie said...

Thanks for sharing this post. It is brave. I miss openness and accountability at times. Other times, I fear it.

I had a really busy day and am sick, so haven't had time to think my resolutions through yet. I will, though, and will get back with them.

In my life, for the whole last year, my focus has been so much on "if my husband will change..." The rest of us were in survival mode until then. Now, he has made changes that were needed. It means that now I have the room... reason... freedom... to work on my own changes, and there are definitely changes I need to make, too.

Julie said...

Hi Coffeegirl!

Very intentional goals! May the Lord give you grace, courage, and patience to face the challenges and joys that will be presented to you this coming year!

Julie

Kristi Hopf: said...

Hi CoffeeGirl,

My New Year's Resolutions always tend to be the typical 'Christianese' type: study my Bible more, pray more.
Though those will among my top listed items this year, I love how you describe a NYR to be an intentional choice and precise declaration.
Thus, on reflection, the top of the list will be an idea that has been brewing for a blogpost:
I will work this year on being less like a camel. Working in Africa, I have been on a few camel rides and it always strikes me how loudly the camels protest the directions of the camel driver before obedience. In language study, I learned a word which describes the action of a camel kneeling to the ground. This word can also be used to describe our kneeling before God. It struck me at the time to wonder how often God asks me to submit before Him and I behave like the camel - loudly protesting before submitting. This year, I want to be more attentive to His voice calling for submission - in the small details of life - and kneel before Him without protest as He molds me to be like Him.
Kristi
(blog: www.HopfInNiger.blogspot.com)

Gilles, Wendy, Gaby, Josh & Sam said...

these goals challenge me as well as we press on in ministry on the Dark Continent...thank you for being real and for letting me join you on the journey. To Him who is faithful...in all things...

Lori said...

My New Year's resolution is a bit different. I love to bake (breads, cookies, cheesecake, etc) but I'm not that great at cooking. So - I've decided to pick a cookbook (or two), and cook my way through it all year, in hopes that I'll learn how to cook a few new dishes. For 2009, I picked two cookbooks that I received as Christmas gifts: "The Splendid Table's How to Eat Supper" - by Lynne Rossetto Kasper & Sally Swift, and "Cooking around the World: Japanese" by Masaki Ko.

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