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Click here to read the February 2018 Newsletter
A Fresh Start by Lindsay Shackelford
January 2018

Every September, at least one of my children brings home a questionnaire asking them to list their strengths, weaknesses, and interests — and set at least three goals for the upcoming year. Pairing goal setting with identifying their strengths, weaknesses, and interests is helpful for my kids to take a realistic look at themselves in a non-judgmental way, and be willing to be accountable to their parents and teachers in their chosen goals.  


Don’t each of us look forward to a fresh start? As Christ followers, we hinge a big ole’ piece of trust that God promises us new beginnings. I love Lamentations 3:22-23: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; His mercies never come to an end; They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.


Thursday I shared my New Year’s goal with our small group. Here’s the important part. The next morning, I was tempted to leave it in the dust. I felt tired and unmotivated. But I knew I’d be asked how I was doing. (And by more than one person!) I took strength in that accountability and determined to go on.

Abide. Intentional. Simplify. Those are a few of the words that the members of our small group shared this week as we discussed our hopes for the New Year. I’ll ask them how they’re moving towards their hopes for this year next week. And the week after. And the week after that.

Of all people, I understand that most resolutions fade by Jan. 31. But I want to encourage you that being with a group of people who intentionally move forward in striving to be more Christ-like is one of the most life-giving things that I’ve experienced. God has created you with unbelievable potential, but sometimes it takes steps of action, and it certainly takes a few life-giving friendships to reach what he has in store for us.


May God bless you this year as you strive to be the person that he has created you to be.



click here to read the rest of the  January 2018 newsletter 

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