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2019 Wrap-Up…and a Little 2020 Vision

I don’t know about you, but when I look back on the past year, well…it exhausts me more than anything else. Amazing things happened in 2019 and I can’t necessarily point to any great personal tragedies, and yet I find myself hoping, wishing, planning, and praying for a better 2020

Truthfully, the battles waged in my life in 2019 were all pretty much happening within my mind. It was a year in which I questioned my calling, evaluated my worth, and generally doubted myself at every turn. Despite the fact that life is actually really good. My family is healthy, my marriage is strong, my sons are proving to be remarkable young men, I have amazing friendships, my “day job” in full-time church ministry is going strong, and I released one book I love and wrote another. I’m blessed! And yet…I doubt. I question. I evaluate. And I hope, wish, plan, and pray for better.

How about you? Can you identify with my personal take on 2019?

I don’t believe in New Year’s Resolutions, as such. In my experience, I’m no more likely to exercise regularly/eat healthier/save money/whatever on January 1st than I was on December 31st. But that hasn’t stopped me from taking small, intentional steps toward starting 2020 off right. I want to manage my time better. I want to make the most of whatever time I have to do whatever thing I need to be doing. I want to, more than ever before, keep Jesus at the center of it all. I do want to eat healthier, exercise (semi-) regularly, and manage my money better. But, you know what? Those are all things I plan to do every year. Some years I succeed more than others. 

What I really want to be different about 2020 is how boldly I live my life. I want to dream big and work hard to put those dreams into action. I want to stop doubting myself so much. Truthfully, I want to stop thinking about myself so much, across the board. I want to do more for others. I want to do more than just meet people. I want to connect with them. I want people to smile when they see me coming, because they know I won’t be dumping stress and angst and self-doubt at their feet, because stress, angst, and self-doubt won’t be part of who I am. Publicly or privately.

We’ve all heard it said that hindsight is 20/20, but sitting here on December 28th, looking back on 2019, all I can think about is how much time and energy I wasted, trying to squint the year into focus. I don’t want that to be the case next year. I don’t want to waste all that time and energy. I want to approach the year with laser focus, from the very beginning, and not have to wait for hindsight to kick in. 

It’s 2020. It should be perfectly clear from day one.

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