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    New Year’s Resolutions and The Slow Process of Change

    I have a love-hate relationship with New Year’s Resolutions. On the one hand, I’m enamored by the idea of a fresh start and a clean slate every time that big, jeweled ball drops in Times Square. Reflecting on the past and looking to the future with anticipation and hope – who wouldn’t enjoy that euphoric sense of optimism?  And yet – I’ve been around the block for enough countdowns to know that, though I may have my sights set on a handful of goals in the new year, life has a tendency to distract me from those ideals, often before Ryan Seacrest wishes us all goodnight.  Apparently I’m not alone.…

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    Find Healing for Hurting Hearts

    What’s on your New Year’s Resolution list? If your list is a lot like mine, it includes returning to pre-holiday healthier eating habits and making time for exercise several times a week. Those are common resolutions regarding physical fitness. Not so common are resolutions pertaining to our emotional fitness. But I have a book recommendation that might help with your 2020 emotional goals: Healing Every Day: A 90-Day Devotional Journey by Mary DeMuth.

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    A Christian Perspective on Including Exercise in New Year’s Resolutions

    Exercise is one of the top New Year’s resolutions. Many people want to exercise more. But what are the benefits of exercise? How should a Christian view exercise? An article from the Mayo Clinic provided 7 benefits of regular exercise[1]: Controls weight Combats health conditions and diseases (anxiety, arthritis, high blood pressure, cancer, cognitive function, depression, Type 2 diabetes, falls, metabolic syndrome, and stroke) Improves mood (exercise stimulates various brain chemicals that can cause less anxiety, more relaxation, and happiness) Boosts energy (exercise delivers nutrients and oxygen to tissues and aids the cardiovascular system’s efficiency) Promotes better sleep Puts the spark back into your sex life Can be fun ……

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    Instead of New Year’s Resolutions

    Fill in the blank: New Year’s __________. You probably either supplied “Eve” or “Resolutions,” right? Resolutions are intentions that may last days or weeks, but so often they peter out before we even get used to using the new year in our dates. May I suggest that instead of forming resolutions, we spend time asking some powerfully insightful questions that will help us evaluate ourselves truthfully and helpfully? Here are three questions that many community/accountability groups ask each other regularly (as in, weekly): What am I doing to feed myself (spiritually)? How am I spending time in God’s word and other sources of spiritual truth and wisdom such as books?…

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    New Year: New You or Old You? — Actions vs. Resolutions

    It’s January and as expected, class attendance exceeds the maximum room occupancy at the gym. These (will prove to be non-faithful) newbies are bubbling with excitement to start their “New Year’s Resolutions.” They start with high hopes that this will finally be their year to change. But after years of observing this New Year’s phenomenon, I know the gym will return to normal by the end of February (if not earlier). It’s easy to make resolutions. It’s sticking to them that’s the problem. When asked to speak about his book, Put Your Dream to the Test, John C. Maxwell, internationally recognized leadership expert, speaker, coach, and best-selling author, gave me…

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    Managing Our 2016 Expectations

    Back in the saddle of weekly activities,  2016 is already barreling along, the stock market and the weather jerking around like a bull in the Houston Rodeo. (Or…maybe that should be a bear?)  Whether we write down our goals and vision for the year ahead or not, we all have this picture of the way we'd like things to be. And then life happens. Here are some reminders to think about, pray about, as we try to live on purpose when life starts bucking around: We hold our expectations with open, God-trusting hands. Like Nehemiah, we may long to see certain outcomes and ready strategic plans for the moment when…

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    Wilderness Wanderings 2016

      Leadership is broken because leaders are unbroken Wilderness Wanderings 2016: Learning to Live the Zigzag Life Happy New Year and welcome to Broken Leadership, the blog of Leader Formation International (LFI).  My name is Bill Lawrence, founder and president of LFI, and I want to take a moment to greet you and inform you concerning our early 2016 blog plans. I want to write a series of blogs on the subject Wilderness Wanderings: when a zigzag line is the shortest distance between futility and fruition. If you’re in any kind of leadership position, whether business or professional, educational or governmental, or—the most important—parental, you surely have wondered at times…

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    Starting Over

      Leadership is broken because leaders are unbroken January 1, 2016. A new year and a new start. Celebrations and all that fun. Resolutions and all that jazz. Bowl games and all that pizazz. A new slate and all that hope. But what do we do with everything we’ve written on the slate of 2015? Does it all just go away?  What if 2015 was a wilderness year for you as it was for me in some ways? The wilderness. Barren, empty, lifeless, colorless, solitary, unending hard sand, rock outcroppings, and rugged mountains. Hot in the day, cold at night. Far from the action, from the crowds, from life and…

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    The Tapeworm Gallery: Something New Under the Sun

                December 31 has arrived, though not soon enough. You've counted down the days for Crabatha's departure. I succeeded in keeping you perpetually irritated with her (and Mark) these past nine weeks. I know you will miss her lemon face and nails-on-chalkboard nagging. But no worries. I have someone else in the cue to prick your sensitivities. So keep forgetting Jesus, and keep focusing on your rights.              Speaking of rights, I saw your list—your 2016 Happiness Umbrella of Needs, Goals, Entitlements, and Resolutions. Adorable. I see you want to stop living in the past. Great idea. I prefer you keep your eyes on the…

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    New Year’s Day 2014 – Examen and Determine

    New Year’s Day inherently brings with it the proverbial “clean slate”- a chance to start over, a chance to review, refresh and begin again – 365 new days. Looking back in order to move forward is a reasonable way to begin this New Year. So, before rushing fast lane mode into the 2014 take a deep breath, set aside a few moments to review/examen and a few moments to determine. Notice both God and His hand in your life in 2013. Determine – how do you want to move forward? What soul-nourishing practices will you continue or add? What is God inviting you into in this New Year 2014? Useful…