It is 2016. The dawning of a new year brings with it resolutions. I was reading an article on this subject and the article gave the top 10 new year resolutions people make each new year. They included getting out of debt, losing weight, becoming more healthy, quit smoking, spending more time with family, and getting organized. My new years resolutions are a bit different than usual.
I am in the last days of our deputation. We will be leaving for Argentina in just a few months. God has blessed our deputation. As long as things continue to go as they have, as long as churches continue to partner with us, our deputation will have lasted 2 years! We will be living three quarters of 2016 in Argentina. Because of that, my resolutions for this year have to do with leaving for Argentina and life in Argentina. The top three resolutions I have for 2016 are…
- Finish right, finish strong. Deputation is very close to being over. That doesn’t mean it is time to relax. Our deputation has been very busy. We have enjoyed it, and it has been very busy. These next months are packed out with meetings. That is the only way we will be able to leave. As of the drafting of this post, we are at 79.5%of our needed funds. We must finish right and finish strong. Finishing right means that we end deputation prepared for Argentina. It means selling all that we have and storing the items we are going to keep in preparation for our departure. It means spending any available time we have with family and friends. It means completing the needed paper work for our visas. Finishing strong means that we complete our deputation fully supported. The truth is, the only things I can do about this is have a full schedule, share my heart, and pray to God that He will give the increase. Thus far, God has answered our prayers. We still do have a lot to raise, but I have a full calendar, I am presenting and preaching, and I am begging God to give the increase! By God’s grace, I will finish deputation right and finish it strong!
- Learn the language. We have 6 months of language school completed during our internship in Arequipa, Peru. We still have 5-7 months to go. Learning the language is not an option, it is a necessity. Learning the language does not mean that we talk like Tarzan, “Me want to go to store. You go church with me.” Learning the language goes beyond completing language school, it is effectively communicating with people. In one sense, you are always learning the language (I was reading a book in English a few days ago and came across a word I had never heard of. I had to stop and look the word up. I am still learning English!). My resolution is to be fluent in Spanish by the end of 2016. We will always be learning more, but this resolution involves becoming fluent!
- Encourage my family. I am reading a book about building a team. The author (a former missionary) asserts that every man has a team. Your family is a team that God has given you. The author encourages men to see the family God has given us as a team that God can use to do great things. My wife and three daughters are going with me to Argentina. They will assist in church planting. They will assist in church work. They are the team God has given me, and I think they are an amazing team! 2016 will be a life-changing year for my family. Moving to another culture, not just for a few weeks or months, but making a total life-change like this will be challenging. There are exciting elements to this change but there are also elements that involve sacrifice. I am resolute in encouraging my family through this year.
I hope that 2016 is a wonderful year for you. I hope you learn more about who you are in Christ this year. I hope you get more involved in your church. I hope you serve Jesus more than you ever have. If you are not a believer in Jesus, I hope you repent and believe on Jesus today! Make 2016 a year that changes your life and the lives of those around you for the better. Make 2016 about Jesus!