Fighting is easy. Pursuing unity is a lot harder. If you watched our live video last night, you know that we shared a little bit about an argument we had yesterday, as well as how we dealt with it. For us, a few tactics have been helping us learn to argue well (deciding we don’t need to divide through disagreement, making the choice to argue with the goal of understanding the other and not defending ourselves, and even holding hands at one point as we fought) – but this blog is about our resolution to the fight.
One of the main things that came up in our argument was the fact that we didn’t seem to be helping each other work towards anything tangible or specific… our actions towards each other have been more reminiscent of simply a meandering stroll, rather than a pursuit towards a common goal. While we’ve talked about dreams, vision, creativity, marriage, kids, ministry, goals, travel, desires, life achievements, and so much more that seems miles ahead, something was revealed yesterday that we’ve neglected: goal setting for the NOW. What day-to-day things are we working towards, both individually and together as a couple? In fact, shining a light on the simple fact that this was missing from our relationship helped us both to understand where the root of our argument was coming from.
Once we figured that out, our fight turned into tangible action that helped us choose the health of our long-term relationship over our own pride. We made lists! Below, we’re sharing those lists with you. There are some items physical, some emotional, some spiritual – but all of these are relevant to the season we’re in currently and what we’re working towards in the immediate future. For the sake of living vulnerably, we know that goal setting can be an overwhelming thing. We’re at the starting line for some of these, and farther along in others, but we’re committed to working them out together in unity and in love.
What Are We Building?
- Make progress in fitness and health (for the current season, cutting out sugar and increasing physical activity, like running)
- Write more, beginning on a daily basis (and the discipline that comes with sticking to it consistently)
- Tithe on income consistently (in hopes of increasing in financial generosity and responsibility)
- Become more involved in our community in LA (including making intentional time for people in our church and beyond)
- Stay disciplined with music (by picking up the guitar to play and be challenged on a at least a weekly basis)
- Prioritizing daily quiet time alone with Jesus and letting that guide intentional time with people one-on-one
- Looking for opportunities to see where God is speaking in any given situation (being intentional to tune out day-to-day distractions and not exchanging any given moment for something “less than” what that moment holds)
- Be bolder in approach to people (especially carrying confidence and love in interactions with unknown people in daily life)
- Increase “quiet time” as a priority at the start of the day (intentionally taking time to be less busy, to set my mind on higher things, and to rest with God)
- Discipline with fitness and health (mostly running 4+ times a week, cutting sugar out of the diet, and increasing core training activities)
- Create on a daily basis more intentionally (setting aside tangible minutes, rather than just “getting around to it”)
- Grow/be educated/push more to learn (current skill: daily Spanish lessons on the DuoLingo app)
- Take daily time to pursue growth in spiritual gifts (including active prayer and listening to God’s heart for specific people)
- Organize records, emails, and lists that have built up regarding work and creative projects (taking every day for at least 3 weeks to tackle a little bit of this large task)
- Pursue active “mentor/mentee” relationships (in this current season, find who these people are and begin to build those relationships with intention and time together to be taught and to teach)
- Listen better (grow in humility, kindness, and friendship in interactions)
- Find a more disciplined balance with technology (including putting the phone away more frequently when it’s not needed, and taking the time to fully “unplug” for at least a few minutes each day)
- Get a handle on our finances with discipline and better budgeting (including beginning the Financial Peace University course that was gifted to us)
- Grow in our intentional encouragement of each other and of the people around us (that our relationship would be a safe place for us and for people around us)
- Hold each other to our individual fitness goals (including weekly hikes together and making sure we help each other say no to that dessert!)
- Help each other with decision to not have sex until we are married (this is a challenging one, and it deserves a blog topic on its own to explain why we’re making this decision together – it’s a good thing, and we both have the heart to see it as a rewarding thing in the long run, but there’s difficulty currently)
- Spend set-apart, intentional time with God together (including prayer together, worship, and talking with God about what our future holds)
- Challenge ourselves to constantly grow in the way we communicate and compromise (and find/utilize books, articles, and podcasts that can help us with this on a weekly basis)
- Continue to always take time and choose to have fun/enjoy life together (including creating things, going on fun dates, and not overthinking the little things)
- Speak to each other and to people around us with the heart to listen and understand, not defend or prove a point (helping us with our love, unity, and empathy)
- Learn to rest well (and be tuned in to what any given situation or time holds for us – whether it requires our action or just our rest)
Do any of these goals resonate with you? As we continue on this journey, we’d love to hear about what you’ve learned or how you hold yourself to them.
Coburn + Alicia