Connect Your Dots – A New Bible Memory Challenge, #Write28Days, and Hope

New Challenges

The beginning of the year can bring extra challenges.

Fitness challenges. New Year’s Resolutions. Yearly goals.

They can overwhelm even those of us who appreciate a good plan.

How do we decide which goals to meet? Even the options between good, better, and best are enough to drown us.

What if we used a kids’ activity to help us?

Connect the Dots.

Remember these drawings? The sneaky goal was to help us learn to count: draw a line from 1 to 2 to 3 to 4.

But the larger life goal is this:

Connecting the dots helps us discover the big picture.

See how you can connect the dots in your life to find the bigger picture

Dots for Me

These are three dots popping up for me this winter.

1. Fitness Challenge

My niece Amanda shared a faith/food/fitness challenge, The Little Way, with our family at the first of the year. I joined in. Today is Day 17 of 30 Days with Revelation Wellness. It encourages us to hope in little changes, that even they can make a difference.

Little Way Revelation Wellness-2

2. Bible Memory

A new Bible memory challenge begins next week at Do Not Depart in Philippians. And because it’s my thing, I definitely want to participate fully in it. It will progress at a slow pace over the next few months. (If this interests you, I’d love for you to join, too!) Memorizing in the moment increases my hope both now and later.

Click to sign up for the #Philippians1 Bible Memory Challenge

3. Writing Challenge

And finally, beginning February 1 Anita starts the #write28days blogging challenge. I always enjoyed the #write31days so much and now that they’ve ended, I’m grateful Anita is picking up the baton. I’ll be sharing 28 verses/songs/snippets on hope.

write28days

I’m choosing each of these challenges because I want to do them. Thankfully they’re all staggered in time, go at different paces, and involve different areas of my life.

Connect the Dots

But how do they connect?

When possible, we like our lives to be integrated. Connected. Whole.

I’ve discovered the connection in my dots: It’s my One Word for 2019, Hope.

I’ve been looking for ways to practice hope, not just think about it.

And if Jesus is my living Hope, I want ways to practice Jesus, not just think about him.

So these three challenges, these dots of fitness, scripture memory, and writing, are each connected to each other through my commitment to hope this year. I love when God brings things into alignment.

Hope Happens

Based on the work of C.R. Snyder, Brene Brown says in The Gifts of Imperfection that hope happens when we do these three things:

  • We have the ability to set realistic goals (I know where I want to go).
  • We are able to figure out how to achieve those goals, including staying flexible (I know how to get there, I’m persistent, and I can tolerate disappointment and try again).
  • We believe in ourselves (I can do this!).

My three dots check all three boxes.

Yet even with that, none of my three dots are end-goals in themselves.

My hope through them is not for weight loss or memory improvement or better writing skills (although if those things happen, I won’t object).

Nor for perfection. And maybe not even for completion (we’ll see).

These challenges are just points of connection for hope. They are useful to help me see the bigger picture, the larger-than-life Hope, a more accurate view of Jesus.

What are the dots in your life? Do you see a theme running through them? Is there a connection waiting to be made?

Even as we connect the visible dots of today, we still won’t uncover the whole grand picture until later. It’s too big to see at a glance.

But in the meantime, today’s dots are enough. They keep us moving forward. They stir us toward progress. To faith. To hope.

Follow your dots.

* * *

Do you see a thread running through your life in this season? Please share in the comments.

  • If you want to join the memory challenge, get all the details here. Or ask any questions in the comments. Once you sign up, we’ll send you links to download the resources to help you memorize easier.

Click to sign up for the #Philippians1 Bible Memory Challenge

12 thoughts on “Connect Your Dots – A New Bible Memory Challenge, #Write28Days, and Hope

  1. blankLisa Murray

    Yes, yes, and yes! Love connecting the dots, love seeing the bigger picture. I love how you are connecting dots in your life for physical, spiritual, and writing growth. Blessings to you!

  2. blankLaurie

    Your January sounds…challenging! But fun. I like each one of the challenges you are participating in. I will have to check out that Bible Memory one. I love the “Do Not Depart in Philippians” title. Sounds like they know me! 🙂

  3. blankKatie

    Dots for me are continuing on my health journey physical and mental. Spiritual I just added the youversion Bible app. I love the small devotionals that are easier for me to do. Recently started sharing more and writing again.

  4. blankRuth

    It’s a good thing God sees all the dots and gives us everything we need in order to connect them (including hope!) I guess I’m not the only one who can’t see more than a few dots at a time.
    “today’s dots are enough. They keep us moving forward.” Amen! Enough strength and guidance for each day…

  5. blankAmy Jung

    I’ve done a lot of thinking and planning for the year but hadn’t thought about things in this way. Thanks for giving me some additional things to ponder! Connecting the dots with you!

  6. blankBrooke of Passport Couture

    I love the idea of seeing life as connecting the dots to see the big picture! It can be easy to get caught up in the details and the ideas of what we “should” do. Remembering how everything fits in the big picture helps me a lot. I feel less overwhelmed and realize everything will come together in the end. Thanks for inspiring and encouraging me to move forward with my goals for 2019!

  7. blankfloyd

    I like the connecting the dots analogy. I also like the wise and mature outlook on how in and of themselves, they’re not the end all be all.

    Working on my dots too!

    1. blankLisaNotes Post author

      I’m glad you decided to join the memory challenge, Cheryl! You should have received the first emails by now; let me know if you don’t get them. I’m excited about how God wants to use the truths from Philippians 1 in each of our lives!

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