It’s 2014 already?!?!

I always enjoy the space between Christmas and New Years. Reflecting on the year that was, dreaming about the year to come. And for the first time in a couple years for Heather and I, we really did feel free to DREAM about 2014. We typically ask the Lord for some milepost words for the year to help us dream, plan and interpret what’s coming. Heather heard “renewal” and I heard “the year of us.” Both of these really hit our hearts with anticipation, hope, and wonder. We’re dreaming about a year of adventure together as a family – camping, hiking, backpacking, fishing, and travel. And being in one house and one community for the entire year (that’s happened once since 2007!)

For my part, I am also sobered in realizing that the man/husband/father my dreams will require is a key part of my journey for 2014. Becoming that man will no doubt require much of me, and demand a greater intimacy with the Father and relationship with Jesus. A year of us, indeed.

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A brief thought about new years resolutions…

Several years ago, I heard a financial advisor whom I respect say, “If you only have $3,000 extra in a year and you have to choose between funding your IRA and taking your family on vacation…go on vacation.” At the time, I was in a place where part of me scorned that sentiment. My internal dialogue was pretty self-righteous and most certainly used the word stewardship to shame that advisor. Today, I couldn’t agree with him more. I see so many people paralyzed by the lure of retirement and what they think that means.

A friend recently shared this blog with me. Check out #7:

http://www.becomingminimalist.com/better-resolutions/

While I’m not generally a minimalist advocate, this list really resounded with my heart’s cry for the year. A year of us! A year of creating memories, of living out what we want ‘family’ to mean. Amen to that.

If you haven’t invested time yet in dreaming for 2014, I encourage you to make it a priority. Let your heart go, give in to desire. What would you love to do? To see? And what kind of man or woman will that require?

Words for Unbound…

We also pray and ask the Lord for words to help Unbound Ministries navigate the year.

“Offer more” is a theme we first heard last year and we felt strongly that it is to continue throughout 2014. The sense is that what God would have us do is make Unbound available – “offer.” Without the pressure of “go sell this” or “book x number of events, etc.” But simply….offer. And so we are offering what God has given us to others. Many of the relationships that God has put in my life in the last couple years have been with other ministry leaders. And so we’re hopeful and anticipating some opportunities to share the message of Unbound with their communities.

And the sense with the word “more” is also just that…more healing, more freedom, more real life, more hope – not just the rule-following offers of behavioral management that continue to be preached by so many of those offering help.

One of the phrases that we would put to the last few years is learning that waiting on the Lord is the exact opposite of passivity. Waiting on him actually requires much more of us WITH him as opposed to us running with our own ideas and programs. And so we will continue to wait on him in that regard, walking closely together, fighting off the temptation to “go big” with the message, and simply making ourselves available as he moves.

- Ezra