My Personal Goals for 2012

As we begin a new year, I love mapping out some purposeful goals for myself to continue to grow in my faith, keeping a simple lifestyle, and being intentional in missional living. I want to be continually examining my walk to make sure I am growing (2 Cor. 13:5) and striving “not to act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do” (Eph. 5:17). This year I have been inspired to adopt 12 intentional goals for the year. One to make habit for each month of the year. I have prayerfully written these out in my homemaking binder using the Graham Ministry Intentional Planner forms, along with our family mission statement and my personal mission statement so I can review weekly in my planning times and keep myself on track. Putting thought and prayer into selecting what the Lord would have you do will bring about beautiful fruit. Don’t try to force goals on yourself that others may have added. Submit yourself to what the Lord would have for you.

I am eager to keep my focus this year on continuing to strive to treasure the little moments, the blessings of each and every day. I don’t want to get caught up in doing so many things, that I miss out on the gifts of my little ones. I want to make our home a gift of grace for others through our hospitality. By God’s grace, my prayer is that I “shall not fall into the falsehood that this day, or any day, is merely another ambiguous and plodding twenty-four hours, but rather a unique event filled, if I so wish, with worthy potentialities. I shall not be fool enough to suppose that trouble and pain are wholly evil parentheses in my existence but just as likely ladders to be climbed toward moral and spiritual womanhood.” (thanks to 10 Steps to Stay Alive to the Beauty of God’s World) And as the article continues later on, “I shall not allow the devilish onrush of this century to usurp all my energies but will instead, as Charles Williams suggested, ‘fulfill the moment as the moment.’ I shall try to live well just now because the only time that exists is just now.”

My theme this year I feel is pursuing GRACE in my daily interactions with my children. I find I am so easily succumbed to anger and frustration at their many needs, questions, and demands. I want to be able to stop what I’m doing and meet them with love and graciousness. I’m embracing Proverbs 31:26 as my verse for this year, “She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.”

1. Read 12 books (one per month)
2. Start my day by getting dressed
3. Take a daily 30 minute pause/rest each midday to simply read or nap as needed
4. Re-establish weekly planning retreat (have gotten out of this routine a bit due to my husband’s crazy work routine – but as we enter a new season, I think it will work to get back on track!)
5. Record a daily highlight, blessing, or memory from each day in my Mom’s One Line a Day journal (to treasure God’s goodness, my children’s progress and humor, and all the other little blessings since I am so prone to forget!)
6. Continue recording 1000 gifts and beyond! (This exercise has certainly been life-changing! I can’t stop! I want to make thanksgiving my dialect! I’m joining the Joy Dare to record 1,000 gifts in 2012! I’ve completed my first 900 over the past 14 months, so I’m going for 2,000 gifts by the end of 2012.)
7. Find a workable exercise routine for this season
8. Convert all my crockpot recipes to freezer meal adaptions (to simplify my meal preparations!)
9. Work on seasoning my speech with more kindness toward my children
10. Plan one way to bless, serve, or encourage my husband on a weekly basis
11. Plan a monthly outreach opportunity for our family
(to our community, at Elderly home, or local public school)
12. Begin reading more classics to further my education and improve my vocabulary and writing. Join classics book study group for accountability. Want to always be pursuing the joys and delights of learning!

In all our goal making, let’s embrace this simple reminder: (thanks to the lovely ladies at GirlTalk for the following encouragement)

In her book, Keep A Quiet Heart, Elisabeth Elliot encourages us to focus on the most important of New Year’s hopes:

“Will the young woman find a mate? Will the couple have a child? Maybe this year will be the year of desire fulfilled. Perhaps, on the other hand, it will be the year of desire radically transformed, the year of finding, as we have perhaps not yet truly found, Christ to be the All-Sufficient One, Christ the ‘deep sweet well of Love’” (page 49, emphasis mine).

This year, let us ask God to dissolve all our hopes (however good they may be!) into a single hope: to know Christ and to be found in Him. May this be a year of desire radically transformed, a deeper, truer, knowing of Christ as our All-Sufficient One.

“But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord” (Philippians 3:7-8a).

And may we remember that the only guarantee of lasting change in our lives is through the power and grace of our Savior. We can strive in our own strength to make the goal, but without God’s empowering grace we will never succeed. Let’s make sure to embrace His gracious work that was accomplished on the cross and walk in that beauty day by day as we seek to be transformed into His likeness.

For help with your own personal goal making, check out Simple Mom’s helpful list of questions.

About Lindsay

Lindsay Edmonds is first a lover of Jesus, wife, mother of four, homemaker, and writer. She loves inspiring women around the world toward simple, natural, and intentional living for the glory of God.

39 Responses to My Personal Goals for 2012

  1. termite detection dog August 16, 2012 at 1:56 pm #

    I’m going to bookmark your site for future reference. Keep writing great posts like this!

  2. Sireesha Patcha February 29, 2012 at 6:44 am #

    Hi Lindsay,

    I just wanted to take a few moments and write to you how I feel, I feel you being a very terrific mom, wife, and best of all your love for GOD and dedication towards him has amazed me.

    Your way as looking at every opportunity of life, every blessing , counting it, I have only come across your website just two months ago while on a research of trying things for my 2 and half year old son and something just pulls me back to your website.

    For the past week its the first website that I open in the morning and the last that I close…but I have nothing in commom with you :-( , but praise the lord for you writing all this selflessly that it helps other people and believe it , it is helping everyone in various ways big or small . God bless you and your family.

    All the very best.

  3. Rachael January 13, 2012 at 7:01 pm #

    Hi Lyndsay! I found a 15 minute workout routine that has been working for me! My kids are five, three, and one, so I need something doable that will not take much time away from them. I found a program by Theresa Tapp called T-Tapp, and seriously, its only 15 minutes! I heard of it from the book Large Family Logistics. I just started a few weeks ago, and have lost 4 lbs and 25 total inches already! I feel great and have more energy!

  4. jeff noel January 13, 2012 at 6:35 pm #

    Lindsay, especially love #’s 9, 10 and 11. Great list. Keep moving forward. :)

  5. Rachael Resurreccion January 13, 2012 at 4:59 pm #

    Thank you for sharing so much of yourself on this blog. Your words are heartwarming. I know that part of my work this year is to speak with more kindness towards my little ones, and towards myself.

  6. Lori January 13, 2012 at 1:18 pm #

    I really appreciate your site. I just discovered it recently. Looking at your goals, however, overwhelms me. I find myself in a season of life where goals become laws that I begin to live under. Some people thrive with goals, I ultimately condemn myself because I am not living up to my goals. I’d love to hear any comments/encouragement you have for how to joyfully set and follow goals while not condemning yourself when you fall short.

  7. Lacey Wilcox January 12, 2012 at 12:21 pm #

    I was really challenged by your goal of using more graceful words with your family. I’m guilty of trying to rely on my own strength to be gracious to my baby girl, rather than daily remembering that the only way to be a giver of grace is by making sure I am fully connected to the One who has so fully given it to me.

    I look forward to being encouraged as you walk through your goals this year. May you be deeply blessed.

  8. Courtney January 12, 2012 at 10:51 am #

    Awesome goals, and I know you are going to get them all done! :)

  9. Everly Pleasant January 12, 2012 at 9:59 am #


    Hello! I was very interested upon finding this blog and reading your About section. I am also a home-school graduate and sister to seven! I am unmarried, living at home, but have a great interest in homemaking.

    Your site is lovely!

    Thanks, Everly

    • Lindsay January 13, 2012 at 7:35 am #

      Yah for homeschool graduates! Thanks for visiting Everly! May God bless your pursuits!

  10. Jessica January 12, 2012 at 7:36 am #

    Really love your list. I’ve been a bit derailed in my 2012 goal setting by a sick child. Hopefully, I’ll get it down by the end of the month! I especially appreciate the goal to plan outreach with your children. I really want to do this, and grow a heart of compassion in myself and my children, but often find myself hibernating from the world around us. Could you maybe blog about some of your ideas for child appropriate outreach? I think I need something to jumpstart a list of my own.

  11. Lynette January 12, 2012 at 7:13 am #

    Those are great goals. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Sarah January 12, 2012 at 6:54 am # has some GREAT and healthy freezer meals for your crockpot. I hope this helps!

    • Lindsay January 12, 2012 at 7:44 am #

      That’s funny. I got the idea from her but we did not like the recipes she offered. They were so bland. That is why I was inspired to adapt my own.

  13. Lanai January 12, 2012 at 6:44 am #

    God uses this blog to keep me accountable & encourage me in my daily walk with Him, as a mother, and wife.
    This year the vision for our church is “get in the game” and our pastor is giving us monthly goals/tasks to incorporate in our daily lives.. It’s encouraging to know people all over the US are doing the similar.
    Thank you for your faithfulness! May God richly bless you and your family always. May it be noticed the most during the harder times so you may never feel alone.

  14. Amanda January 12, 2012 at 4:54 am #

    I don’t know if you own an e-reader, but you can download a computer app for both Nook and Kindle for free if not. A lot of the classics are available for free, or at a very low cost. I just downloaded a collection of 25 classics for either .99 or 1.99 onto my Nook. The collection includes several Jane Austen books, Anna Karenina, Little Women,Huckleberry Finn, etc. The bonus is not having to lug those heavy classics around.

    • Lindsay January 12, 2012 at 7:45 am #

      Yes! That’s a great idea. I have kindle app on my IPhone that I will certainly look into! Thanks!

    • Lorie January 12, 2012 at 2:59 pm #

      If I may add to this, I looked at Amazon and almost all the classics are free. I don’t have an e-reader of any kind, but I downloaded an app on my laptop to be able to read these books. Really excited about all that is offered!

  15. Corinne January 11, 2012 at 10:42 pm #

    Such an encouraging and motivating post! May God richly bless all your plans!

    May I suggest Timothy Keller’s book “The Meaning of Marriage” instead of Mark Driscoll’s book. Timothy Keller’s book is completely gospel-centered and written by a man with many years of marriage under his belt. You will be blessed and encouraged. Please take time to read reviews about Driscoll’s book before reading it, as there are several areas of concern with its content.

    • Lindsay January 12, 2012 at 7:47 am #

      I have Meaning of Marriage too and can’t wait to read it, as we received it for christmas. I’ve heard some reviews of Driscolls book but I love his sermons so I still want to read it with discernment for our family.

      • Lacey Wilcox January 12, 2012 at 12:20 pm #

        I’m actually super excited about Driscoll’s book, as well as the Meaning of Marriage. One of the things I really respect about him is that he strikes me as being incredibly intentional with his wife and family, rather than getting caught up in the crazy life he leads. I look forward to reading both of these, as well as hearing your thoughts on them!

        Speaking of Driscoll, one of his fellow Acts 29 pastors, Matt Chandler has a new book coming out the end of April, called The Explicit Gospel–I’m beyond excited about it as well!!! :)

  16. Bridie January 11, 2012 at 10:38 pm #

    Love the post! Love the comments too. Its weirdly encouraging to discover that I’m not the only one who struggles with the ‘seasoning’ in my tone and words to my children. Its probably the biggest mothering issue I hurt over (read: emotionally beat myself up over) for myself and them, followed closely by missed opportunities with my babies because I’m ‘plodding and ambiguous’ and don’t look up long enough to celebrate the ‘worthy potentialities’. Thanks for the encouragement – your posts this year have been right along my own convictions and thought processes and have been just the clarification this pregnant and therefore brain-dead mama needs to make the changes I want but couldn’t quite straighten out for myself!

  17. amanda elizabeth January 11, 2012 at 8:18 pm #

    thank you again for blessing me (us) with another thoughtful and inspiring post! um this busy momma (is making excuses!) and hasn’t even made goals for the year. i guess it’s not too late;) i, too, love the verse you chose (among other things!) and love what you said about speaking grace to your children.

  18. Lorilee @ Loving Simple January 11, 2012 at 7:32 pm #

    We established a quiet time in the afternoon even now that my kids don’t nap and it makes all the difference for everyone’s mood. Quiet rest is so important.

  19. Leesy January 11, 2012 at 7:06 pm #

    As I read ur goals I am so inspired…even choked up as I hear ur love for your children and your husband. I am adding the :
    9. Work on seasoning my speech with more kindness toward my children
    10. Plan one way to bless, serve, or encourage my husband on a weekly basis

    To my personal goals, those 2 inspired me the most, how easy is to go throughout the day especially when u r homeschooling and around them all the time and instructing to just get the words out without thought to the “seasoning” of ur tone, the “seasoning” of the words even. Then in my house my husband is the bread winner, gets up at 3:00am comes home by 5:30-6:00 goes to bed by 8:00 latest so we have 2 hours/day to discuss the kids, bills, medical issues, home repairs you name it plus eat, have some family time…The last thing I tend to think about is taking time out to encourage him or even just a loving physical gesture…ughhhhh, this one hits home, ty for sharing–I am adding this to my personal goals for sure!

  20. Holly @ Faithful Womanhood January 11, 2012 at 6:52 pm #

    Goal setting is so important! It helps me stay on track and remember what I wanted to accomplish when life gets hectic. Here are my 2012 goals:

  21. Loraena January 11, 2012 at 5:19 pm #

    Love this list – so similar to my own. How did you find your classics book study group? I would love to be a part of something like that. I love classics, but find that reading them is usually pretty far down the priority list – moreso than it should be. Is your group in Portland an open to newbies? I live in Hillsboro…

  22. Allie January 11, 2012 at 4:49 pm #

    Love your list! I just made my list last week, and I’ve been so inspired and humbled by reading others’ lists. As someone who works from home, I was really encouraged by your “start the day by getting dressed” post as well — getting dressed with the Gospel first and physical clothing second. One of my mentors calls it the “daily washing in the Word.” Thinking of it as washing and getting dressed is so helpful to me; it prevents me from over-spiritualizing it (i.e., every day does not need to be a two-hour intensive exegetical study), and it demonstrates the necessity and practicality of starting my day in His presence. Thanks for sharing!

  23. Amber K January 11, 2012 at 4:04 pm #

    Love this! So encouraging, and so very true to some of my own personal goals. Thank you for sharing!

  24. Jill January 11, 2012 at 2:05 pm #

    Thank you for sharing! Can you expand on what you mean by pursuing Grace? Grace is a tough concept for me to fully grasp. Maybe you could do a post all about grace and what it means, and what it looks like with Christ, and with others in different situations. just a thought…

  25. Nicole January 11, 2012 at 11:35 am #

    Thank-you for sharing. I find the Lord is really using you and your blog to keep me accountable. Thank-you for being a blessing in my day! I work with a Church based kids club called Pathfinders, when you said you wanted to plan a bi-monthly outreach for your family it reminded me of something we just recently did. The kids in our club made handmade cards ( we did have a scrap-booker help us!) but they were so special. We visited a care home where the kids sang together and then handed out these cards to the elderly as they visited! It was a really special afternoon. We are thinking of doing the same for “shut in” members of our congregation and visiting them to deliver them. Might be a nice idea for your family. :)

  26. Jessica Lynette January 11, 2012 at 11:23 am #

    I so enjoy reading everyones goals at the beginning of the year! I too carefully select 12 each year and I find it inspiring to read about others and follow their updates through the year!

    I have spent the last several months going through the Bible verse by verse highlighting the verses that talk about how we should speak – it has been an incredible encouragement as a mother and has had a direct impact on how I speak to my children! I would highly recommend it for habit #9! I started with the book of Proverbs and this morning completed my 15th book. My plan is to go through the entire Bible and do this.

    • Lindsay January 12, 2012 at 7:54 am #

      That is a wonderful idea! Thanks for sharing! This has inspired me to memorize one verse weekly on this topic of kindness in order to serve as that regular tool to fight my sin.

  27. Paige January 11, 2012 at 11:18 am #

    Beautiful Lindsay. This is why I love your blog! When you spoke of persuing Grace with your interactions with your children I completely understood. I am seeking this myself. God bless you this year!

  28. Marilyn January 11, 2012 at 11:16 am #

    Elisabeth Elliot’s words have also been shaping my goals recently, specifically to daily seek the Lord’s will and lay down my own. I’m re-reading Elliot’s A Path through Suffering right now, and it’s been very convicting for me.

  29. Kristen January 11, 2012 at 11:01 am #

    I appreciate you sharing your goals with us. I am stubbornly coming to the realization that I need them for myself and our family in order for life to not consume us and miss out on precious time. Your verse you mentioned from Prov 31:36. I think this will be my verse for 2012. I have been convicted of how my speech to my children needs to change. Nothing brings it home more then when you hear your 4 year old talking harshly to her 2 year old sister and realizing that she learned it all from you! Thanks again for sharing. Your blog continues to encourage me.

  30. THolden January 11, 2012 at 10:15 am #

    Thanks for sharing your book list. I was glad we had a few in common, thus requiring less additions to my already-enormous list. LOL One of my goals is to be a reader of books. As in, more books than last year, but I may have gotten carried away. I appreciate your example of small, step-by-step goals in that area. :)