It’s been quite a year! We are in the home stretch of 2020. In a matter of weeks, we will be ringing in the New Year. The range of feelings that go with the closing of this year is incredibly expansive. A few people have prospered through the many crises. Some have enjoyed the freedom and flexibility of working from home and the slower pace forced on us by restricted access to typical schedules. It seems that most, though, have experienced this year as overwhelmingly stressful. Lost jobs, struggling businesses, disruptive school routines, fear of sickness, the loss of loved ones, racial unrest, and political upheaval leave us worn to a frazzle and ready for a fresh start.
The time has come to step back and reassess not only where we have been this past chaotic year, but to begin to dream about what we want for the year ahead.
To this end, I offer up 12 growth questions to guide the way in your reflection. Consider taking one question per day for the rest of this year. Or pick a few that pique your attention. Write the question at the top of a page, and then take your time in answering thoughtfully. Allow your mind to mull and ponder your response.
Here are the 12 questions:
- What did you learn from 2020?
- What do you hope for in the new year?
- What habits do you want to build in 2021?
- What disciplines were lost in the fray of the chaos that you want to reinstate?
- How might you reconnect more deeply with God even though church is so different?
- How might you grow deeper in your friendships in 2021, even if the path back to normal living is slow in coming?
- What new routines would you benefit from implementing in 2021?
- What attitude needs refreshing for the new year?
- What do you need to start or restart to move towards health?
- What do you thank God for from 2020?
- What can you plan on doing in 2021 that will create a sense of excitement for you?
- How will you create space for fresh winds of life to enter into your days?
Fresh starts are a matter of intentional choices in how we think and what we do. Those choices begin with setting aside time for reflection and intention.
Sometime during the week between Christmas and New Year’s, take extra time to review all of your questions and answers. Create your plan for a fresh start in 2021.