Thursday, January 24, 2019


About 18 months ago during my prayer time I could hear God challenging me to strive after a greater level of self discipline. I had good discipline, but God challenged me to go for the discipline of a Champion. Since that time I've been on an amazing journey of progress. I've learned that incremental progress is the pathway to great transformations. A thousand mile journey starts with one step and is accomplished by one more step and then one more step. It doesn't happen instantaneously. It's a trajection that must be sustained by little steps over a long period of time. And each step is progress. And progress tastes so sweet just like individual bites of a delicious pizza. Each bite is its own reward =). 3 major milestones of progress that I experienced in 2018 are:

1) For the first time in probably 30 years I resisted the urge (for an entire year) of using "all-nighters" to accomplish my work load. In 2018 I pulled 0 all-nighters. That may sound like no big deal to most people, but when you're a workaholic who loves work and has constant deadlines & 7 months to do 12 months worth of work the all-nighter is clutch for getting things done. But it is also counterproductive because your body pays for it for the next few days and the cumulative effect is poor health. So I'm striving after great health which means no more all-nighters. In 2018 I accomplished that (thank you Jesus!) =). And now my goal is to sustain that.

2) Along the same lines as stopping all-nighters a second major milestone for me in 2018 was to not miss a Sabbath. After 6 days of creating God rested on the 7th day and called it a Sabbath. He said we should do the same thing. Take one day off each week when you "cease from striving" (that's my favorite definition of Sabbath). I did that 51 of the 52 weeks last year. I almost made it all 52 weeks, but we had 1 major event that was 6 days long and in all the hustle and bustle I forgot to take a day off. But I'm immensely thrilled with my personal progress in that area. Now I can't wait for my Sabbath each week. It's a day when I turn off the striving button and turn on the rest and relaxation button. It actually makes me more productive the other 6 days and fills my life with more fun, diversion, family time, laughter, and real rest. It's something I've abused for years. I took God's command of taking a Sabbath each week and treated it more like a suggestion. Praise God for his grace and for His patience with my foolishness. That is major progress for me and my own personal health has greatly benefited from this one "small" adjustment, increased discipline to stop working, embraced wisdom, and obedience to God's direction.

3) Another major milestone for me is that I "speed journal" everyday now. For the past 18 months I've used an app called Daylio to quickly (it takes about 5 minutes) enter what I did (or didn't do) that day. At the end of the month it gives me statistics on my consistency. I can see if I'm actually following through with my priorities. That measurement is priceless at assessing progress and detecting flaws and areas of improvement. Basically it's impossible to quantify progress without some sort of journaling tool. This is the simplest & easiest tool I could find and it's invaluable to the progress process. God bless the people who designed it!

So that's a small progress report from my little world. I'm looking forward to all the ups & downs, expected & unexpected, triumphs & tragedies that will make up the rollercoaster ride of 2019. One thing is for sure, I may not know what the days ahead hold, but I do know who holds my eternity... and that kind of security adds so much peace & celebration in a world full of daily chaos, corruption, and trajedy.

God bless!