30 Goals For My 3rd Decade (apparently this is my 4th decade)

I turned 30 last Saturday, and when I showed my ID to the woman handing out wrist bands as last week’s Zoo Brews (beer festival at a zoo = awesome), she burst into tearful laughter and told me I look way too young. I guess I’ve still got it.

Anyway, thinking about this next decade made me want to put together some goals, and I’m happy to share them with you. I broke them down into 3 areas of my life: career, ministry, and life. Here you go:


1. Finish my Doctorate of Ministry (D. Min). I’m about a 3rd of the way through.

2. Receive ordination in the United Methodist Church. Pretty much just waiting on my D. Min.

3. Clean my office. I’m about a 3rd of the way through.

4. Train, develop, mentor, at least 5 future pastors.

5. Grow the church each year by baptisms, professions of faith, worship attendance, mission involvement, giving, and discipleship. Seriously.

7. (That last one should count for two.) Build stronger relationships with colleagues throughout the conference and connection.

8. Blog more (at least once a week) and hit more important churchy issues.

9. Start an on-going local mission project/relationship that brings aid, relief, hope, and/or housing to those in need in Idaho Falls.

10. Stop saying “right” a million times in each sermon and, in general, improve my preaching.

Ministry (yep, it’s broader than what I get paid for, so is your ministry)

1. Continue to keep a room open in our house for children in need whom God may (and probably will) bring to us.

2. Collaborate with other ministers in town to help break down racial divisions.

3. Start a non-polemic non-evangelical but educational and funny theology web series.

4. Increase our giving percentage to church, disaster relief, children, and global health.

5. Reunite lost pets with their owners. (Sometimes, this one pays.)

6. Go on an international mission trip. Clearly, I think these things can be done in a responsible and life-giving way, but I understand why some are against short-term mission trips.

7. Reduce our family’s and church’s negative impact on the environment.

8. Create a dialogue-type ministry for different people groups and the church. I sort of need to do this for my D. Min., anyway. Twobanger.

9. Continue to engage non-church members in the community, build friendships, find ways to bless others without expecting some benefit.

10. Volunteer more at stuff. (How’s that for ambiguous?)


1. Pay off student loans. Then I will be a real adult.

2. Go to a Major League game at a different field each summer with my dad.

3. Travel with my family across an ocean. We wouldn’t have to do anything over there, I just want to be on a plane for 8 plus hours. That’ll probably make the family happy.

4. Run a half marathon. Since the most I’ve ever run is about 5 miles, I feel like this is a reasonable goal.

5. Draw or paint something big every year.

6. Teach my daughter (and other children if they happen to appear) how good it is to love Jesus, to be a part of the church, to run as fast as you can, to be in nature, to ride a bike, to sing loud, to watch Ninja Turtles and eat cereal, to cry, to forgive, to learn something new, to give something away, to rest, and to not fight back.

7. Take more pictures.

8. Pray the daily office at least 3 days a week.

9. Take up a hobby. I NEED SUGGESTIONS. Fishing? Wood working? Blogging? Can blogging be my hobby? Besides ministry and school, I do very little other than read a few comic books and play a couple hours of video games a week. I need something else. Maybe art?

10. Surprise, date, love, and get away with Joanna more often. Boy, I love her.

So, that’s a working list. What are you going to do with your next decade?

peace to your souls †