Whatever they are, here are a few ideas of what I hope for in 2006:
- A definitive placement. I've finished seminary, and my commitment at Wildwood Christian School is through the end of this school year (read: late May). While I don't want to be presumptuous about it, I'm planning to have something to do after that! (That, after all, is what this blog is about...) Here's the goal: I'd like to know with certainty where we'll be next year by mid-March.
- Ramp up my writing. 2005 has been good to me, writing-wise: I've finally gotten some substantial headway toward a firm writing "career". '06 could be the full emergence for this-- an online column at one magazine, a regular contribution at another, some semi-regular contributions in a print magazine, and the (anticipated) completion of a book manuscript that I'm co-authoring. I'd also like to break into at least one new publication this year. The goal(s): 36 online articles (which are basically covered by my established commitments, so this one is easy), plus at least four more in magazines or other media, plus finish the manuscript with Phil Douglass. Oh, and continue blogging, at a pace of at least one post per week.
- Build consulting opportunities. Opportunities for work in consultation has quietly materialized over the past year that could be realized in the coming year. Working with churches, pastors and pastors-in-training, and with schools-- vision-casting, strategy-building, staffing and placement. All of these seem to ring my bells even more than I ever thought they would. My goal: work with at least one of each (church, pastor, school) in a significant capacity during 2006.
- Treadmill. And other exercising, but (probably) mainly on the treadmill. I've been starting and re-starting a workout plan for several years, and it might be that this spring presents the best opportunity to build my commitment to it since 2001 (when I started seminary). I'd love to get all ambitious and say that my goal is to lose 20 pounds in 2006, but let's be realistic: I'll be satisfied if I'm able to say that I exercised regularly (as in, twice or more every week!) for the whole year. If I can lose 5 solid pounds by summer, I'll be happy (and, of course, if I'm actually sticking with it then 5 should be little trouble...).
- Read books. Hey, for the first time in four and a half years, I don't have a reading schedule dictated to me. Now, I've never had trouble getting motivated to read-- I usually put six or eight books away each semester that are not on the reading list-- but I don't want to slack off just because I'm finished with being tested on what I read. Goal? Well, I used to think that 25 books in a year was a pretty good goal back in college... maybe I'll say 36 books for 2006.
- Miscellany. There are a number of things that could go on the list. Ordination? How about finish at least three of the personal or household projects that I've started and not finished? Preach a certain number of sermons (especially if I'm not in church ministry after May...)? These would all be good goals, but I'm not going to make any definitive commitments for now. Stay tuned...
Thanks for a great year of reading my blog-- I've so appreciated your readership and your input. See you in 2006!