Weekly Goals for the Week of January 18, 2016

Last Week’s Goals

Bible Reading Lists:

    List 1: New Testament—Romans & 1 Corinthians 1—12

ADDED NEW List 2: Acts 1—7 (Last week I just didn’t get much out of reading Acts, and being a missionary I really wanted to get more out of it, so Louis encouraged me to read it again, and I decided to read it over and over for awhile alongside the other lists to get more connections and to let it soak into me over time.)

    List 3: Prophecy—Jeremiah 13—19 I read to 18.

    List 4: History—1 Samuel 5—11 I read to 10.

    List 5: Law—Numbers 13—19

    List 6: Wisdom—Proverbs 7—13

Reading for Self & Marriage:

    Read 1 ½ books
I finished the first two books on this goal list in one day. Much of the rest of the week did not go as planned, however, and I picked up other books to complete this overarching goal of reading 1 ½ books. I want to share with anyone who reads through all my goals that I hope that in your own reflections on the week you are able to give yourself grace and mercy and remember that God establishes our steps. He knew how well I would follow these goals, and by writing them I was able to focus. I was also greatly encouraged by three different individuals checking in on my reading progress this week besides my husband. I felt that loving warmth that comes with fellowship as well as the motivation that comes from accountability. I hope that you all take time to look back at what you accomplished in your weeks and how God helped you.

    Read the rest of Copy Cap Murder by Jenn McKinlay (42% left)
I love this book series, love this author, loved this book!!!

    Book That Has a Fruit of the Spirit in the Title: Read the rest of When the Darkness Will Not Lift: Doing What We Can While We Wait for God—and Joy by John Piper (33% left)

Book By or About a Missionary: Read to 79% of Serving as Senders Today: How to Care for Your Missionaries As They Prepare To Go, Are On The Field And Return Home by Neal Pirolo I read 12% this week. I have read most of this book already, and in rereading the introduction and first chapter I realized that this book needs some time and space to breathe itself into my life and our newsletters, so I took a day after reading the first chapter to journal my thoughts and pray about the study group we are hoping to host via LissesToLebanon.wordpress.com

I also read:

A Time to Grieve: Comforting and Counseling Those Who are Grieving by Robyn Ledwith Mar—Read 88%

Dispensationalism: Essential Beliefs and Common Myths by Michael Vlach—Louis read to me 15% This is part of a goal for my year for us to read one book together, and his goal for the year to disciple me in tough areas that I normally avoid due to the quantity of humungous words.

A Dickens of a Murder (Canterville Book Shop Mystery 1) by Joyce Lavene—Read 100%

Overcoming Missionary Stress by Marjory F. Foyle—Read 5%

42% + 33% + 12% + 88% + 15% + 100% + 5% = 305% (I read 3 whole books last week!)


Down below in Routines I will write more about my utter failure this week in this category. Without Louis, these first two goals were impossible, and they just weren’t part of the things he needed to do this week.

Create a Year-Long Blog Plan for Lisses to Lebanon with Louis

Begin on Both Blogs: Mommy Book Blog and Lisses to Lebanon to Advertise our Upcoming Series on the Book Serving as Senders

Edit Blog Post about Educational Books in Review & Future I felt called to write a different blog post than I had planned, but I have actually only written three sentences. It is turning out to be hard to write. Hopefully, however I will get it done and it will encourage whoever God is asking me to write it for. I know that it is going to help me to share things and stop being a perfectionist, so that might be His only goal.


    This category is not working out as hoped. I sat with Louis this week because I have realized that these routines all depend on commitment by he and I together. Whether it be a morning routine, and evening routine, a routine to tuck in the kids, or a routine for learning something or reading something. In this time of transition and adjustment we are not seeing eye to eye, or reading each other’s minds. Even if we plan and discuss and make realistic goals it seems that we are not able to accomplish the things I am hoping, even if we agree to it together. So, please pray for this for us. We are in survival mode, the world feels like it has crashed down around us, but I know there is hope. I know God called us to live here, and told us we could LIVE here. He did not call us to flounder and drown, He called us with a glorious purpose in mind. Knowing myself, and knowing my kids, and knowing Louis, we both know and discussed over many days this week at varying volume levels that we need to find routines in order to get our feet stable and begin moving toward thriving. We are going to start fresh. I don’t know what it is going to look like, and I might remove the category from public altogether, but I am hoping that with smaller steps we can work toward a thriving life. Several people have stepped into our lives and into this conversation at just the right time, and I have great hope that this will start looking up very soon!

    With that said, the low point of this week was that we did not follow any routines: The morning routine which I had been getting into regularly fell completely apart. The evening routine never really has stabilized, and the most upsetting is that we have not really done any Arabic as a family or couple. I have shame and guilt sitting on my shoulders about it. HOWEVER, today we began something I know will be worth it, and realistic and great. We are having one of the young men Louis is discipling (Rizzan if any of you remember praying for him before) to our home to discuss culture, theology, and language. We played UNO in English for him to practice and then in Arabic for me to practice. I was so honored and grateful. So, already your prayers are beginning to be answered!

    Another routine that we started that has so far been successful several days in a row is for Louis and I to have 30 min. of “Office Hours” together. We did not let the kids interrupt (much) and we talked through the projects we are both a part of or that I would like to become more of a part. I was very pleased with this.

    Finally, GRACE. Grace is a dangerous commodity. It gives us so much freedom, and Satan would like to twist that freedom into shame. I had several truly awful nights staying up with one or both kids so that Louis could wake up and go to work the next day. Then, I did the unthinkable. I slept in! In the past this would have caused me to bully myself all day, and the first day I did. One morning I woke up from a horrific nightmare and was angry all day as though the bad things in the dream were real. I even yelled at Louis about them. But I gave myself grace, was able to pray and forgive myself for being a mean mommy for a day or two, and then I was able to wake up today from another truly horrible nightmare and just cry about it. I was able to remember that we are all in various stages of culture shock and transition and teeth coming in and start fresh.

This Week’s Goals:

Bible Reading Lists:

List 1: New Testament—1 Corinthians 13—16 (End), Mark, 2 Corinthians 1—8

List 2: Acts 8—14

List 3: Prophecy—Jeremiah 19—25

List 4: History—1 Samuel 11—17

List 5: Law—Numbers 20—26

List 6: Wisdom—Proverbs 14—20

Reading for Self & Marriage:

Read 2 books. I took last week’s goal setting and knowing that, if every week I fail to meet my exact percentages, eventually there will come a day that I feel like I am failing and will forget the joy of reading. The percentages help me because I also look at my blog to remind myself of my goals. This is where I write it. So, I am going to loosen up the way I write some of the thicker, headier, tougher books’ goals. It may seem crazy to read so many books at once, but I need a whole week to process each chapter sometimes, so here are books from many different fields that I want to read 1 chapter of each this week.

Read 1 Chapter of Serving as Senders Today: How to Care for Your Missionaries As They Prepare To Go, Are On The Field And Return Home by Neal Pirolo (88% Remaining)

Read the remaining 12% of A Time to Grieve: Comforting and Counseling Those Who are Grieving by Robyn Ledwith Mar

Read ½ – 1 Chapter of Dispensationalism: Essential Beliefs and Common Myths by Michael Vlach This book is for my marriage goal to read a book with Louis, so he is reading it to me and explaining it to me. (85% Remaining)

Begin Book 2 of The History of the Moravian Church by Joseph Edmund Hutton. Read 1 Chapter.(I previously read Book 1, which brought me to 32% of the book complete.)

Begin The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You by Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D. Read 1 Chapter

Read 1 Chapter of Overcoming Missionary Stress by Marjory F. Foyle (95% Remaining)

Find books for each of the remaining categories in Light Reader of my Reading Challenge: Biography, Book With the Word “Gospel” in the Title, Book Your Pastor Recommends, and Book About a Current Issue, Bedtime Book (One that is not heady or tough, but light and fluffy to read on my way to sleep)


This time with Louis and I agreeing about the goals on our shared blog before I post them.

Lisses to Lebanon: Create a year long blog plan

Both: Advertise / explain the study for Serving as Senders Today: How to Care for Your Missionaries As They Prepare To Go, Are On The Field And Return Home by Neal Pirolo

Mommy Book Blog: Post about Memverse & Bikini Body Mommy


Office Hours Plan for this week with Louis:

Have “Office Hours” at least 20 min. five days this week with a topic for each meeting.

  1. Blog Plan
  2. Serving as Senders
  3. Guest House Binder
  4. Make Over Your Calendar
  5. Wild/Free Choice

Author: Annie Liss

Currently a mother and a wife who loves reading. Formerly a middle school math teacher who kept too busy and stressed out to read. My husband and I are missionaries in Lebanon.

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