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I ended 2014 on a down note because I didn't fulfill some of the personal goals I had set for myself. But I wasn't worried because 2015 will surely bring a renewed commitment to move forward with my goals and objectives, right? Well, it's more than three weeks into the new year, and I still feel stuck. So it's time for a change. It's time for an action plan. It's time to get back on track.


The family has gone home, the friends are back at work, and the festive atmosphere surrounding Christmas has quietly dimmed. Gone are the lights, the great food, and all that remains are the memories that are made during this time of year. What now takes its place is a host of optimism that manifests itself through New Year’s resolutions. An opportunity to start the year afresh, wipe the slate clean from the past, and have hope renewed once again.

I ended the year on a bit of a down note because I realized some of my goals I had set were not going to be reached. One of my fitness goals was to run 600 miles in 2014. Because of a foot problem midway through the year and a calf problem towards the end of the year, I came in at 420 miles (70 percent of my goal).

I vowed to get back on track and start with a bang in the New Year. With my goals set, I was ready to roll. The beginning of the year started with extra frigid temps outside, so I started running indoors.

Two days later, I woke up to realize that my just-laid plans were already running into roadblocks. I hobbled my way down the stairs to get my morning tea, realizing that any momentum that was starting to gather had indeed been sucked out of me. Another foot issue.

Running isn’t an activity that I naturally gravitate toward, so my enthusiasm for it is fragile, at best, but it has been something that I have needed to do for a long time. I needed to strengthen my heart after I had a heart incident. Running has grown on me, but it is still a struggle to get out there and do it regularly. But, now I was really losing hope. I really wanted to start out the year with a bang, and now I was feeling like I lost another year and it has just barely started.

I know I have the rest of the year to get back on track, but it is very discouraging to have the wind taken out of your sails so quickly. Frankly, I am having a hard time getting any kind of enthusiasm whipped up. I feel stuck, but I need to persevere.

"steadfastness in doing something despite
                                   difficulty or delay in achieving success."

Maybe it is just having a general feeling of being overwhelmed. I have too many projects half complete and the juggling act of keeping all the balls in the air just came crashing down. If I start in on one thing, that means I won’t be doing the other thing. So the guilt of that leads me to not start anything.

So, I am writing this to help get myself back on track. I am not there, nor do I feel motivated. My first task is to look at the expectations I have set for myself. Are they realistic? Are there too many goals? Are some more important than others? Can I reprioritize?

I also need an action plan. Something that is doable and works towards this one goal. Breaking this down into even smaller bite size chunks is probably where I need to start. If I just get started, I know I can build on that. So that is my first step. Just get started!

The second thing I am doing is lowering my expectations. Lower expectations leads to fewer disappointments and more gratitude for when things go better than expected.

Thirdly, I am going to take it one step at a time. Will I be crushed if I don’t make my goals? Right now it is hard to think about, but I will do what I can. I will look for alternatives to stay healthy if things don’t turn around. Just put one foot in front of another, and keep moving.

Fourthly, and most importantly, I won’t quit. I can’t. That will be a sure sign of defeat.

These steps are pieces of the overall puzzle, but a lot more of it is mental. The battleground of the mind is where most of the important work takes place. This is where I know I cannot do it without the help of Christ.

Just the other day, I was working on my kitchen remodel, and I was stuck as to what to do in a certain area. I exhausted all the things I knew to do, so I had my dad come over, and I explained the situation to him. He offered up some helpful ideas that I liked, and I was off and moving again. Sometimes we rely on our own wits so much that we don’t even consider assistance from the outside. Christ works through people, and those people in your lives can make a real difference. I am thankful to the Lord that I have others to speak into my life.

We all go through ups and downs in our lives, and we need to put into remembrance the times we got through the tough times in our past. The Lord was always there working on our behalf. He is there when things don’t always go as expected. He is there to lift us out of the muck when we are stuck. He is there to comfort us when we feel lost.

Today my foot feels better, but not runnable. I don’t know when it will. I do know that it will, someday soon. I have confidence that I will be healed, that I will have the motivation to push ahead, and that I will not quit. I will not let the fear of injuries stop me from moving forward. I do know that I can accomplish all things through Christ who gives me strength.

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
- Phil. 4:13 (NKJV)

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Author Biography

Jon Larson
Web site: cfaith
I am a father of four and husband to an awesome wife. I have been called to work in the Information Technology department for Living Word Christian Center and cfaith in Minneapolis, MN since 2001, and I oversee them both. My goal is to use technology to make real connections between people.

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