Reflecting on the old year, preparing for the new one!

new-years-calenderAnother year is coming to an end. This is a good time to reflect and to plan for the New Year. Although you may have left some things undone, it is not too late to begin the necessary work to get them done in the upcoming year. This requires quiet time and personal reflection. Real success in life can only be measured by the accomplishment of your personal goals. Until you truly understand why you are here, you can never put the energy needed to bring it to pass. Spend some time during this month to determine what you want to accomplish in the upcoming year.

First, begin with quiet reflection. Quiet time leads to the discovery of true purpose, and true purpose leads to true happiness. True purpose is the object toward which one strives or for which something exists. It is necessary that you spend time alone to discover the “why” you are here. This will move you from doing some things, to doing the right things. There is no time to waste anymore. The years seem to go by faster, and the time to do the necessary things is fleeting. You can make this year a successful one by using the last few days in it to prepare for the next one. Spend some quiet time reflecting who you really are, and what do you really want to accomplish.

Next, focus on improving your strength while understanding your weakness. Some people unwisely focus on their areas of weakness thinking it will make them a better person. A fish would never spend time trying to figure out how to survive outside of water. It will not make him a better fish. An eagle would make a terrible fish because it’s strength is in flight. So it is with you. You are who you are by the grace of God. Focus on your strength. Your strength is tied to the things you are able to do naturally (without much effort), and they will bring you the greatest amount of success and satisfaction. In the upcoming year, focus on your strength and soar with the eagles.

Finally, focus on improving your spiritual relationship with God. This is where your inner strength resides. You will never achieve external greatness without internal character. Internal character comes from God. He is the only one that can give you the object towards which you should be striving. He will give you true moral and values that will lead to success. If your successes are based on what others say about you, you will always be subject to the whims of the people that say them. These things will never bring you the peace that you desire because their view of you will be based on their view of themselves. True character is spiritual in nature, and spiritual strength can only come from God. When this happens, the approval of others become unnecessary.

This is your year for greatness! During your quiet time, remind yourself of this. Use it as your affirmation. Your view of yourself and your goals in life should be connected to your divine purpose that can and will be revealed to you by God.

This is the only true measure of success. As you focus on your strength, you will become a better person. You will do the things that you are good at. As you look for employment, take on work that is tied to your strength. This will enable you to earn more, do more, and live more. Spend quiet time this year, and soar with the eagles in the new one!

Timothy Houston is an author, minister, and motivational speaker who is committed to guiding positive life changes in families and communities. For questions, comments or more information, go to

December 9, 2013
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