Great Casterton Parish Council

Serving the people of Great Casterton

Clerk: Derek Patience
29 Priory Gardens, Stamford
PE9 2EG

Tel: 01780 753066

February Newsletter

By now you should all have made your new year's resolutions, but many of these new initiatives will also have lapsed by the time you're reading this article. Statistics tell us that only 8% of us will actually succeed in fulfilling our new year's plans and that 25% of us will make and fail at the same resolutions as last year.

I read an article a few days ago entitled "Sticking to Your New Years Resolutions" It cited 10 top tips on how to keep your resolution alive. Here are some of the more important ones which will hopefully help in your new initiatives. These top tips are equally applicable to our faith progression as we try and walk closer with Jesus in 2019.

Tip 1—Don't set yourself a goal that is unachievable. Easier said than done, I hear you say. But the trick is to set yourself a goal just a few steps outside your comfort zone, something that challenges you but doesn't overwhelm. Come and try Café Church maybe fits the bill as this only happens on the second Sunday every month. Or join the new confirmation class which is being arranged shortly.

Tip 2—Break your goals down into small chunks then every time you hit a goal a sense of achievement is gained. This can then motivate you to further actions. Maybe spend 30 minutes a week in a quiet place like church or the open spaces just to re-engage with creation. Take a sharp intake of sub zero air and watch your exhaled breath disappear. One of the few visible signs that we are still alive and not living a matrix existence.

Tip 3—Know why you are engaging in this new challenge. Keep asking yourself, "why have I chosen this particular project. What do I want to get out of it"

Tip 4—Make it repeatable whether hourly, daily or weekly. As clergy we are encouraged to pray every day early in the morning. Our brain learns through repetition (remember your times tables in primary school). When we repeat and repeat something it becomes a habit and we all know how powerful habits are. On the days when I miss my prayer time the day seems different and incomplete and guilt moves in to unbalance by productivity.

Tip 5—Get a Friend Involved in your new ventures. Nobody likes letting others down so if we get a friend to share our resolution or even to ask us regularly how our projects are progressing, this can be a big motivator. But choose someone who will challenge you not someone who will pat you on the back and say "never mind, there's always next time."

As I said in my Christmas newsletter I hope you will make attending church or church parties one of your new year resolutions. Remember, Jesus loved parties, because he loved people. He changed water into wine at a wedding party he attended in Cana. Not just a few bottles but 30 gallons the equivalent of over 1000 bottles. What a party that must have been. We too have church parties starting with a Barn Dance on Friday 1st February in the church hall. This could be one of the small step tips mentioned earlier in this article. Hope to see you on the dance floor.

God Bless

Rev'd. Don