Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 in Review: Did We Meet Expectations?

Hey gang!

Today’s the last day of 2009 and it is time to take a look back at the past year. With every year, there is change. 2009 is no different.

On a personal level, I failed on two of my biggest challenges. The first was losing weight. I started out the year at 235. I had just received my first insulin pump and in the adjustment, was already gaining. Unfortunately, that trend continued for a while. By the middle of the year, I was busting out the seams at over 275.

However, by June, I was getting adjusted at least in the level of insulin I was taking daily. There were points early in the year that I was approaching taking a full vial of 300 units daily. Since June, I’ve steadily come down. I am under 200 units per day on most days, but if I have three full meals, I’m still teetering over. I have dropped off about five pounds since early November. I also saw my first pump die a beeping death at church a few weeks back. I have a new one that works though, so it’s all good. Thank the good Lord for insurance.

My other big goal of failure was reading through the Bible this year. I made it through most of the Old Testament before the world got really crazy in October. Thankfully, with just the OT, I have learned so much. God blessed me for a valid attempt beyond what I could ever hope for. For 2010, I guess reading those four minor prophets and the New Testament are on the list for things to do.

The ministry, One Man Revival, has been a major success. At least to me. I remember teaching at Bible Baptist many years back and I always commented then that when I teach that I seem to learn as much as most people. That hasn’t changed this year. Again, I thank God for allowing me understanding to learn.

I really think the ministry grew over the year. In January, I was barely getting time to write and looking back, most of the material from that time period was encouraging, but didn’t carry a lot of depth. The family vacation and spending time with Christians who love me in Florida in March helped me focus and began building great things.

With April came selected days of material. Mondays became dedicated and will be again in 2010 to marriages and parenting, called Marriage Mondays. The material on that day helped me and many others focus on their spouses and children. Wisdom Wednesdays focused mostly on the words of Solomon, with a few weeks of Mike Murdock’s 101 Wisdom Keys. Yes, we still have a few chapters of Ecclesiastes to look at in January.

In June, I tackled the first big series of the year on forgiveness. This might have been the best writing overall all year. I have personally struggled with forgiveness in the past and it ministered to me almost as much as it did to the many letters from people I received. It was true encouragement that told me that I am listening to God on some great messages.

July and August were two fantastic months of working with The Bible in 90 Days. As I said earlier, I got through most of the Old Testament. I have left the work on its own webpage and many people have been blessed by it. Even in failure, God used that work to help people grow closer to God.

By September, not only was I receiving some great books to review from Karen Power, but got asked to write about Mitch Albom’s book, Have a Little Faith and then got a new group, Kathy Carlton Willis Communications, sending me some books to review. I’d like to take this time to thank all the authors who have allowed me to read their work and share words from them and review their works. Right now, I don’t aspire to write a book, but they inspire me to keep sharing truth and have written some really cool works expressing some even more awesome ideas.

October might have been a month of challenge with worrying about my wife. She had a couple nodules that turned out to be no big deal. I’m very grateful for that, since I would like to keep her around for a little longer than the seven years we’ve celebrated so far. But during that time, I slowed down and came back in November feeling like I was dropping the ball. Since then, there has been a lot going on.

In December, I started a series on spiritual gifts and thus far, we’ve completed six parts of what will end up taking through January to finish. God has made me feel OK about this though. I am taking my time to make sure that this is a thorough look at the gifts God wants you to have.

Another concern I had in 2009 has still been a struggle at times. Even though the social website Facebook has been a great connection to bring One Man Revival to those of you that are reading it, there is still that tendency to waste time there. I find myself staring at status updates a tad too often at times. Thankfully, I have kept the promise of not getting involved in all the games that they provide.

I don’t think time wasting has been such a problem as overloading my schedule. I think by year’s end, I found myself tackling too many tasks. One of the sad things that will happen in the opening days of 2010 is scaling back on some of the work I’ve been doing outside of One Man Revival. I’ll talk more about this with some of the new goals for 2010 that I’ll cover tomorrow. With a new year comes new goals.

The one great area that I am proud of with One Man Revival is how the ministry has changed from being strictly about encouragement into a ministry of discipleship. As much as I have taught myself, it has been a true blessing to hear from you, over 375 letters worth in 2009, telling me of what you have learned in reading the OMR website. It has blessed my soul to know that this ministry is meeting that challenge that God has put before me.

Just last night, the website went over 7500 page views in 2009. While numbers aren’t always important, it tells me that on average about 20 of you are taking a look each day at the website. Now, I know that some days are better than others. This month has been the best month of the year with over 1300 views. Of course, we’ve had more writings this month to look at. I hope to keep that pace up in the new year.

Tomorrow, we will talk about 2010, the hopes and goals of One Man Revival Ministries. I will also share a few more best of 2009 writings tomorrow and this weekend. On Monday, we are getting back into the spiritual gift series. I am hopeful that the schedule will be more accurate in 2010. There are plans for certain series already in place. Again, I’ll talk about those tomorrow.

Finally, I want to take time out again to thank each and every one of you that take your time to read the words that God gives me. Without you, I’m just talking to myself. Granted, I need to learn what God has for me each day, but you give me hope that I’m not the only one hungering for God’s word and grace to be upon us. You guys are great and I love each and every one of you!

Thanks for everything in 2009 and here’s hope that 2010 is the year of revival, not just for one man, but where the lost can be found! Happy New Year’s Eve and be safe tonight!

I love you guys!

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