My new Year’s Resolution is more about stopping than starting. It’s more about giving up than taking up. Its intention is to rest, not rally.
But before I explain it any further … I would like to reflect on 2015.
I’ve always been one for New Year’s resolutions, giving up something for lent, fasting from something, or taking on a new challenge that requires discipline and commitment. It’s through these challenges that I have experienced immense growth, and an evolution of perspective.
You can read my New Year’s Resolutions for 2015 (last year) in this blog post >>click here<<
Below is a review of the challenges that I completed, and the ones that unfortunately get stamped with a “DNF” (did not finish).
A Review of 2015:
Pray for someone every night for a week straight (new person each week) | √ – This was my main New Years resolution and I can honestly say that I completed it. I prayed for 52 people in 2015, and I sent out a prayer text every single night except Sunday’s (because it was the night that I would ask people if I could pray for them throughout the week, and what their prayer requests might be). Below my review of last year, I will explain more about what I gleamed from sticking to this challenge and how the theme of PRAYER for 2015 birthed the theme of ABUNDNACE for 2016.
Read truth, The Word, every day | DNF – This was probably the hardest goal to keep. For most of my life I have been a morning Bible reader, but since having to wake up at 2:30 a.m. (yes you read that correctly) for my job in L.A., I had to spend time in the word in the evenings… which often resulted in me falling asleep. I hope to carry out this goal in 2016, and Jeremy and I aim to read through the entire Bible this year together.
Go somewhere new every month | √ – Jeremy and I definitely accomplished this goal last year… and to a fault. Now we are hoping to stay put here in Bend, OR for a while and take a break from the man made birdhouse (aka airport…)
The Prayer Mile – during one mile of my run, turn off my music, thoughts, podcast ect. and pray | DNF – I did not run that much last year… drastically less compared to the previous 10 years of my life. I really only started running when Jeremy and I began training together for a half-marathon this fall. We would often discuss things on our run, and I got distracted from committing one mile prayer.
Memorize a verse every week | DNF – But I now have a community of people in Bend that are holding Jeremy and I both accountable to this. I have found that in the past 3 months I have memorized two verses a week – the one Jeremy memorized, and mine.
Read 10 new books | √ – These are the books I read this year: Pagan Christianity, What To Do When It’s Your Turn, One Thousand Gifts, The Power of Habit, Mere Christianity, Draw the Prayer Circle, Still LoLo, The Meaning Of Marriage, Unveiled Wife, and the Bible.
Run a marathon | DNF – But Jeremy and I ran a half-marathon together, and we both exceeded our goals!
Get promoted | DNF – Ironically I quit my corporate job, we moved away from the city of dream chasing, to live in a city of dream living. Ironically, I am very glad that this goal was not accomplished. In hindsight it would have been more of a set back, than a step up.
I didn’t score so well this year.. I only completely 3/8 resolutions. However, I do want to discuss the most transforming, life changing, and powerful challenge that I did manage to complete, and how it revealed my 2016 resolution.
These are the people I prayed for in 2015. If you received prayers from me, I would love if you (still have the texts) could look back and see how God may have answered these prayers through bringing healing, freedom, reconciliation, peace, love, resolve, prosperity, opportunity, life, provision, light, clarity, guidance, forgiveness, worth, identity, salvation, realization, truth, encouragement, gifts, accomplishments, or abundance into your life.
As I was reflecting and rereading the prayers I had sent throughout 2015, I felt compelled to write a word next to each name, based on their prayer requests, and what the Holy Spirit nudged me to pray over them.
I will continue praying these words over these people in 2016:
Sam Pflug – Trust
Stephanie Dyer – Freedom
Brittany Howell – Peace
Jackie Viramontez – Boldness
Cendi Botti (mom) – Confidence
Dan Botti (dad) – Discernment
Jack Botti (little brother) – Victory
Margo Botti (little sister) – Wisdom
Tori Roloff – Peace
Ellen Lekas – The Armor of God
Erica Storm – Decisions
Lindsey Gerard – Grace
Lauren Scruggs Kennedy –
Mary Esch – Salvation
Carachele Tyvan – Affirmation
Anna Egger – Opportunity
Latane Cox – Comfort
Jamie Herb – Energy
Hannah Novak – Growth
Amber Herzog – Reconciliation
Anna Peterson – Worth
Rilee Arey – Beauty
Shirley Lockhart – Rest
Erica Meichtry – Healing
Megan Smalley – Life
Jessica Wittmayer – Creativity
Kelcey Chilcott – Mission
Lindsey Caldwell – Direction
Destiney Mueller – Provision
Amy Roloff – Encouragement
Molly Roloff – Compassion
Honey Roloff – Renew
Lacey London – Clarity
Thea Moshofsky – Vision
Kelly Sullivan – Purpose
Isabel Garreton – Guidance
Dayna Jacobs – Calmness
Paige Noonan – Community
Chelsa Fraizer – Protection
Braid Anderson – Ministry
Krisit Griffith – Blessings
Corinne Carver – Intimacy
Kelsi Schaer – Steadfastness
Holly Hayes – Discipline
Holly Dunning – Oneness
Haley Dunning – Hope
Veronica Partridge – Strength
Stacy Mehan – Unity
Lisa Jacobson – Joy
Jennifer Smith – Harmony
Jeremy Roloff – Leadership
Audrey Roloff – Abundance
I honestly cannot believe I did it. It blessed me more than any resolution, challenge or goal I have ever made or accomplished. My heart grew in compassion, I learned to practice my gift of encouragement, and I saw evidence of God on the daily.
My faith was increased through prayer in 2015.
During the last week of December, I decided I’d better pray for myself as one of the 52 people. It was then that I realized the key takeaway from 2015.
I learned that the most powerful, helpful, encouraging, motivating, compassionate, thing I can do for someone is pray for them. I learned to stop striving to fix peoples problems, to stop desiring the sense of accomplishment from helping someone, and to let go of feeling obligated to “be God.” I learned to do less, and pray more. I learned that God is more concerned with the work he is doing in me, than through me. I discovered how transforming rest is. I learned to crave stillness. My heart now longs to receive an abundance of…..
So onto 2016:
I want to be able to receive ABUNDANTLY more of what Christ has for me in 2016, and I realized that in order to receive his abundance, I must be willing to obey his command. His command to rest.
I want 2016 to allow rest to rejuvenate revival. I want to discover abundance through less. Through the stripping away, through the minimizing, through the turning off, through the being present, through the stillness, and through the Sabbath.
This year I decided that I am going to faithfully commit to one resolution as opposed to spreading myself thin between eight…
The resolution: SABBATH
Jeremy and I have both decided to commit to remembering and observing the Sabbath in 2016. We want to take God seriously on this command. Who are we to think that we don’t need to take a Sabbath?
Even God rested (Gen 2:2).
Exodus 20:8-10 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates.”
I will also note that God said more about the Sabbath than any of the other commandments in the Bible… and yet we do well to obey the others, and neglect our day of rest. (See Deaut 5:12-15)
So what will this look like for us?
- WE ARE TURNING OFF OUR PHONES. For an entire day. Saturday night before bed, until Sunday night before bed. This means no social media, no internet, and no relentless notifications. It means if you want to contact us on Sunday’s, well I guess you’ll have to come knock on our door. And believe it or not our friends in Bend actually did this last week;) It was a fun surprise and felt so genuine.
See screenshot below if this is a foreign concept to you….
- We will not buy or sell anything. This means we won’t spend our Sunday’s catching up on our to-do-list’s, running errands, and shopping. We have 6 other days during the week to do those things, that should be ample time.
- We will not work. That means our computers are off too. We won’t check e-mails, have conference calls, write blog posts, record videos, ect. That means Jeremy won’t take photo/video jobs, we won’t blog, I won’t write for work, and we won’t commit to freelance jobs on that day. If we absolutely have to work on Sunday for an exception like a speaking engagement, filming for LPBW, or working pumpkin season, then we will see to it that we take our Sabbath on a different day during that week.
- We will spend time doing things we love that are means of worship and rest. We will spend time with people that we love and embrace community. We will go for walks and runs, play chess, read books, cook meals, climb rocks, go skiing, make love, read scripture, embrace silence, celebrate, rest, and play.
So there you have it. The Roloff’s resolution for 2016 is to adopt the rhythm of Sabbath. And this resolution is not just for 2016, we intend to commit to it for life.
My word for this year is: ABUNDANCE
I am praying for ABUNDANTLY more than I could ever ask or imagine in 2016. I am praying for an abundance that can only be experienced through Sabbath.
If you are interested in the basis for our doing this, or want to know more about the Sabbath, check out this, “Sabbath Ciriculam,” that was developed by the church Jeremy and I met in!
What are your commitments to 2016? Share in the comments!