I read 56 books this year but I didn’t mean to. In 2017 I decided I was going to set an audacious reading goal. I had always loved reading but had gotten out of the habit while raising little people. So in 2017 I set the goal of 50 and surpassed it. I learned that I loved reading and I didn’t miss TV or Netflix time, or cleaning either. 🙂
For 2018 I decided that I would lower the goal, because I really did need to clean the house and interact with my husband, not just have my nose in a book or Kindle. So I lowered the goal to 40. And I read 56. Why did that happen?
When I began reading for that goal in 2017, I had to discipline myself to make time to read. I had to choose reading over other activities. I had to intentionally find time to do it. And then it just became what I did. Reading was my natural free time choice. So by the time the year was over, what began as a discipline became a habit.
I’ve experienced the same thing in 2018 with a new goal. I wanted to finally and for real read all the way through the Bible. I figured I had gotten pretty good at spending time reading, I could at least allocate some of that to reading chunks of God’s Word. I wrote about reaching that goal here. But, now that the year is over and the goal is met, I’ve noticed the same thing. What began as a goal that required discipline and much effort is now a habit and a natural part of my day. Because what once took so much effort now is just routine, I have room to concentrate new discipline and effort somewhere else.
It’s tempting to be super arrogant of how great I’ve done and how self-disciplined I’ve become. The truth is, I firmly believe it is the power of God working through the consistency of discipline. 1 Peter 1:3 says, “His divine power has given us everything required for life and godliness through the knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” God’s divine power allows us to accomplish things that make us more into who He wants us to be. Our role comes in putting one foot in front of the other to put in the work.
What is God calling you to accomplish in 2019?