Saturday, January 02, 2010

From 2009 to 2010

Photo on 2010-01-02 at 07.35 #3 (camerabag'd Magazine)

I believe it is customary this time of year to consider the year gone by...

I look back at 2009 and am pleased that I achieved my first Project365. I am also disappointed that I gave up losing weight and, pretty much, became a distant relative with the gym.

2009 saw a building up of connections with likeminded people in and around Glasgow. I'm not sure how many folks I met for coffee in 2009 but, by the way Stephanie gave me a mug when Starbucks shut, I don't think it was inconsequential. I want to continue to use and channel this influence for good... for encouragement and inspiration.... and not for regret or the chasing of "what might have been".

2009 brought into focus that I am part of the Salvation Army... albeit... an outlier. I will feed wherever I can but will gravitate towards my denomination in the vain hope that change can & will occur as a result. If only one person "gets it" as a result of my influence then I will have succeeded.

2009 also saw me move on from the first incarnation of ((deep))... which is a decision I still question 4 months on. I think I have something to give within the context of a "divisional fellowship"... and need to explore how this may work.

I believe it is also customary this time of year to lay out the changes in our lives that we are resolved to make. I currently have 18 things on that I am working on. I say working on... because I see life as a journey of ups and downs... and not something that is all or nothing. Life takes work.

These things are as follows (in now particular order):
  1. I want to learn to pray everyday
  2. I want to read my Bible everyday
  3. I want to keep the podcast moving/evolving/growing in its reach and influence... continuing to spread stories worth listening to.
  4. I want to see a coming-together of people passionate about prayer and open the door for some form of 24-7 expression in Glasgow as an extension of ((deep)).
  5. I want to develop my photography - both digital & 35mm
  6. I want to read more - 12 books in 2010 at least
  7. I want to develop my blog with a focus on quality
  8. I want to comment more - on blogs & flickr especially
  9. I want to learn more about painting & develop this creative outlet
  10. I want to exercise more - go to the gym & ride my bike more
  11. I want to lose weight :: 18 - 24 lbs in 1 year
  12. Get a tattoo
  13. I want to develop "a hint of bergamot" into a photography collective
  14. I want to refresh my French
  15. I want to visit Paris with Olly & the we'ans
  16. I want to learn to cook
  17. I want to pull my weight more with the household chores
  18. I want to use my influence for good
There is no proper order... and some are more important than others. For example, is it fair for me to attempt to paint when there are chores that need done?

They are all inter-related in some manner or another... the idea is for me to use the time given to me to the best I can. If I was to group them as a "theme" it would be to do stuff... and, in doing this stuff... get off my MacBook Pro.

I think I spend too much time online... and its not always productive. I want to use my time more productively. To consume... yes... but also to contribute and participate in the communities I am part of... both off and on line.

I got up before 7am this morning. I had trouble with phlegm (nice!) and was dreaming about "problogger" for some reason. Anyway... I got up to make a cup of tea (Olly's idea) and took my MacBook Pro with me. So far... I've been on Flickr, Facebook, Tumblr, eBay, Wikipedia, Camerapedia and Google Reader. I've also been on TeeFury, 43 things and... obviously.... Blogger.

I can't escape this. It is part of who I am. I just need to make it more productive... more valuable... more uplifting. I try not to watch junk on TV... and limit myself in front of the box. I now need to do the same with my online activity. I need to make it count.

Anyway... we'll see how this journey pans out. Please check in with me now and again. Ask me the following the next time we meet... "how are you getting on with your 43 things... even though you are only doing 18?!"

Lastly... I leave you with a challenge. I've been open about my 2009... and my plans for 2010. What did you think of 2009 and what are your plans for 2010?



theWeir said...

That's a good list - a noble set of objectives.

Have you set measures for your goals? And got people to keep you accountable? That's another way where community can really help. People can encourage you (which is different from condemnation, right? ;-p).

I'll need to get back to you on my thoughts of the past & future as I'm not *quite* ready for a New Year yet (

Whatever we think about the future, it's coming.

RobWP said...

Hi Thomas! Great post! Just a thought ... do you think you can influence the SA as an outlier? Or do you need to be more involved (perhaps in leadership?) to really push change? I'm generally interested. From my point of view, I have been in the position of leader and of being led, and am much more optimistic of change as a leader. But that could just be me! Rob WP

weareallghosts said...

@theWeir... I don't think all my goals are SMART but I do intend to keep myself accountable - on this blog, on 43things (its iPhone app made me rethink my stale things and got me refreshing them) & through interaction... I genuinely want people to ask me how I am getting on.

I have... for example... put a load of washing on and emptied the dishwasher... which is in line with #17.

I am also replying to your kind comment (#8).

Please let me know what you wish to achieve and maybe I can help you (#18)


weareallghosts said...


I guess your knowing me now means you don't know where I've been... let me quickly recap.

I've initiated/led the following:

* Alpha / A life worth living
* House Groups
* SNAC - an alternative worship gathering in Bellshill
* ((deep)) - a divisional alternative gathering focuses on young people

I have served for the last 3 years on the East/West Scotland Summer School.

I have stepped away from these activities / events because of a need to recalibrate and come to terms with issues I have with my faith "identity".

I still lead church when I can... something I consider a privilege.

Leadership in my division is more about preservation rather than apostolic pioneering (aka change) - they need a prophet to mix things up and challenge their status quo. I can't do this in a position, imho.

I hope this makes sense?


theWeir said...

As Rob said - good post.

I guess my question about measures was a little about SMART, but more about giving yourself smaller objectives - not trying for the peak of everest in your first pair of walking shoes.

It looks like you are well on the case tho. Which is always good.

Look forward to sharing the journey.

Grace & Peace,


RobWP said...

Hi Thomas - thanks for the considered reply and the background to where you are now. Church (and I've only ever known TSA) can often be frustrating and the preservation/pioneering thing can often be the most frustrating!

However, TSA allowed/didn't stop (whatever else might be appropriate here) the things you have initiated so far - all of which are definitely on the pioneering side of the fence.

I will be praying that you and God can sort the faith identity thing because I have absolutely no doubt that God requires TSA to accept your pioneering work because the Kingdom can only benefit from it.

Prophets don't always have to be outliers.

I'm praying whatever happens, you will be able to add to those bullet points by the end of 2010.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the sharing of your list on 43Things, which reminded me that I set up a list of things there in the distant past. I'll need to revisit/revise these and work out where to go with that. I'll share that somewhere soon in the near future!

2009 was a year that saw a lot of change in my life and the repercussions of some of that still have to work themselves out. I blogged about it a few days ago at

I enter 2010 with a little bit of fear of the unknown, but also with the knowledge that I don't step out alone.

Let me know if there's anything I can do to encourage you with your goals, although it's difficult from such a distance. Thanks again for all you share and for the often unique perspectives you offer on life/faith, etc. I look forward to more of the same in 2010.

Blessings, William.

weareallghosts said...

Thanks William!

Sometimes accountability is easier with distance... it helps to see the wood for the trees.

I think we need to be accountable to each other... to prick our pomposity when necessary... to keep each other in check and in prayer.

We need to raise our issues instead of unfollowing and walking away. If you don't agree with what I say or are offended... then challenge me... raise it... make it an issue.

And I'll endeavour to do the same.


Anonymous said...

Hi Thomas,

That sounds like a plan. Accountability is something I really need in my life right now. I'll endeavour to follow through and I trust that you will too.

Blessings, William


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