Lessons from a Week Away

Nassau Hall, the university's oldest building....

Princeton University

It’s been nearly a week I’ve been back from a week away praying, planning, and writing. I discussed what exactly I do, where I go, and all that good stuff in a recent post, if you’re interested. I thought I would discuss how it went and the fruit of it. I’ve also put a gallery of a few pictures I took with my IPhone at the bottom of the post.

The weather was generally quite cold in Princeton (it’s December in New Jersey–go figure), so as I shared with Emily, this trip was more task driven. There was a reason other than weather, however. Often, I go to Princeton very on top of life, but needing to get on top of the future. This year, I feel more on top of the future, but not on top of life. So, I spent a significant amount of time thinking about life and mapping out a strategy to get life balanced out, tightened up, and heading in a direction that I and God feel good about.

  • I read Michael Hyatt’s e-book on creating a life-plan. You can find it on his blog. It’s free when you sign up for his email list. I used that to stir my thinking and look at the different aspects of life and craft a plan that I feel is doable but ambitious at the same time.
  • I was going to make some improvements to the blog. As I was doing so, it crashed. Hence, the new layout you see. I don’t know if I’ll keep it. But, after a few hours, I had a new one built with the content saved.
  • I did get my sermon schedule mapped out for the year 2012.
  • I did get about 40% of an e-book I’m working on completed.
  • I talked with a friend in ministry who’s going through a tough time and facing some big decisions.
  • I dealt with a big deal at church…but did it without stressing about it.
  • I created some new initiatives for New Vintage Church in the coming year, with plans to boot.
  • I just got away and, without realizing it, hardly spoke for a week, other than a few phone calls back home, the aforementioned conversation with my friend, and ordering food at restaurants. That, too, was interesting and a good reminder that sometimes, silence is golden 😉
  • I came home exceedingly glad to see Emily and the girls. When we had no children, or they were very young, I admittedly found the road to be refreshing. Now, I find it a necessary evil. I miss our girls and, of course, Emily, when I’m gone.
So now, back to life. We’ll see you next year, Princeton (Lord willing). Now, it’s time to see what God has in store for next year. This time last year, I never could have guessed what the year would hold. Nevertheless, it’s a blessing to head into the unknown knowing that no matter it holds, God will be by my side.

 

Dr. Tim Spivey is Lead Planter of New Vintage Church in San Diego, California. He is the author of numerous articles and one book, "Jesus: The Powerful Servant." A sought after speaker for events, Tim also serves as Adjunct Professor of Religion at Pepperdine University. Tim serves as a church consultant, and his writings are featured on ChurchLeaders.com, Church Executive magazine, Faith Village, Sermon Central, and Giving Rocket.

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