Friday, December 29, 2017

Looking ahead -- 2018

I know that 2018 is still a few days away, but I figured I get started with the look ahead.
I'm not real big into New year's resolutions, but I do think that reflection and planning are both activities that need to be done from time to time. Is there a better time than when we turn the calendar?

* I'm going to make a great effort in 2018 to be more civil. I don't think that I am generally uncivil, but I do realize that I often make broad sweeping general statements that often include people  that shouldn't be included in varying categories. Although that seems to be the way of things, it is not necessary that I (or we) conform to those behaviors.
I also want to be more positive and less critical (unless the criticism is constructive). It has been said that I am hateful, mean spirited, and have made inappropriate public criticisms. Even though I might dispute those things, the fact that they have been said should be reason enough for some reflection. Spending less time on Facebook and unlinking it from my Twitter account has helped.  However, there is still more that can be done in the life of a kinder and more gentle John.
Maybe I'll end up just saying less.

When I started this blog more than 11 years ago, it was just a place to write, vent, organize thoughts, etc. I never imagined that people from around the world would read it, much less come back for more. This is my 1,567th post. Although I don't have many local readers that I am aware of, I have had readers from across the US and from more than a dozen different countries in the past week alone. Several of you have expressed that you have found encouragement, comfort, or even wisdom in some of my posts.

I write that to say this -- This is my place.
Sure, I share it and that does create some responsibility on my part, but I am still entitled to my thoughts and opinions. I may no longer share my posts via Facebook (where every follower has a license to be hateful). It's not that important to me that others actually read what I write. If you are a FB follower and want to continue reading my posts, I'd say you probably need to subscribe or follow me on Twitter. I suppose I could continue FB links if that's what's wanted. Let me know what you think.

Back to looking ahead.
* I've ended 2017 by getting back on a more healthy lifestyle and want to continue that through 2018. I'll post more of my health goals in a separate post -- maybe on my other (forgotten) blog.

* We will be looking for a new church in 2018 (we've already started). I don't know what that will mean for other aspects of ministry, but I suppose I will find out soon enough. I have a multitude of thoughts on this that will have to wait for another post -- or not.
That responsibility thing, you know. Apparently some people are more sensitive about my thoughts than they have a right to be.

I also plan to write more often about my beliefs and how they affect my thoughts, attitude and life.

* I plan on riding.
Since I bought my motorcycle on Feb 28th, 2016, I've kept track of annual mileage from that date. Last year (2016) I rode 15,700 miles. This year I'll end up with about the same, around 16,000 miles by the time March 1 rolls around. I may make a couple of simple modifications to the bike this year-- we'll see.
I plan on riding to a few baseball games and maybe a few long distance lunch runs. I don't know if 2018 will include another long ride, but I'm certainly open to it.

* being more civil
* finding a new church
* being more healthy
* riding my motorcycle
That's three things that will be a lot of work and one that will be a lot of fun.

I'll add one more that will be a little of both. I'd like to find a place to volunteer or maybe even work that will have some positive impact. I really don't know what that will look like but I have a couple of ideas.

But there are still a couple of days in 2017 to take care of.
Aaron and Jenny arrive from Chicago tonight. Everyone will be here tomorrow night for visiting and to watch the UFC fights and then again on Sunday for our Christmas exchange and for New Year's Eve.

I look forward to seeing you (virtually, that is) in 2018!

John <><


Mike said...

Maybe your new project will be starting your own oasis church for the Springfield area.

John Hill said...

That's unlikely, Mike.
I figure I'd be the only member of any church I start!