Closing out the books on 2010

December 31st, 2010 · by Tom Stuart · Growth & Development

Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you.  Psalm 25:5

This week I had our bookkeeper close out the books for our small home-based business.  It is always an instructive process because it provides an accurate overview of how the previous year went.  I appreciated being able to hold that final profit and loss statement and the 2010 balance sheet of assets, liabilities, and equity in my hands.  Although it wasn’t everything I had hoped it would be, it gave me cause to thank God for His faithfulness even in a lean year.

It made me think about how helpful it would be for me to take some time to properly close out the books on my own personal life for 2010.  Why not make it a priority to reflect on my personal assets and liabilities and reconcile all my accounts with God and with others before year’s end?  I am always looking for opportunities to learn from evaluated experience so I found that idea very motivating.  So on the morning of this last day of 2010, I did just that. 

My year-end inventory proved to be a very valuable exercise.  It provided me an opportunity to count my blessings while learning from my disappointments.  Both of these resulted in praise and thanksgiving to God for His faithfulness in my life.  The process also gave me a much deeper appreciation for the important people in my life.  And last but not least, it helped provide a final reconciliation with myself and with God, for my sins and shortcomings of 2010.

Here are the questions I asked myself in my year-end closing of the books and my responses to God.  I pray this inventory for a personal year-end evaluation is also helpful for you.

  1. What were the highlights of my year? – Things, events, people for which I am thankful to God?  “I praise the Lord and give Him all the glory for every good gift in my life.”
  2. What were the big answers to prayer? – Breakthroughs, miracles, turnarounds etc.?
  3. What were the low-lights of my year? – Disappointment, heartaches, heartbreaks, losses etc.?  “I give thanks to God for His sustaining grace and wisdom imparted.”
  4. What things did I fail to do? – Unfinished business, things I wanted to do, things God or others asked of me to do, unfulfilled dreams etc.?  “I pray that with God’s help I will do these things in 2011.”
  5. How have I changed for the better? – Character, attitudes, practices, habits etc.?  “I praise God for the way He is changing me.”
  6. Who were the difference makers in my life? – People I am thankful for who made a significant contribution into my life in 2010?  “I purpose to express my thanks to them.”
  7. Debts that I owe? – Un-confessed sin to God or others?  Forgiveness, reconciliation, restitution etc.?  “I purpose to take care of this now or at the earliest opportunity.”

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2 Responses to “Closing out the books on 2010”

  1. This is very timely for me today! I am about to go into my weekly 3-hr prayer WOTL shift and this will help my focus 🙂
    We got your Christmas letter yesterday and happy to read that you are all well and happy.
    We are too and looking forward to the Father’s plan for us this year.
    Blessings, dear ones…
    Kathy & Ivan

  2. Thanks Kathy – praying the Father takes you into the counsel of His heart! Great to hear from you and know a mighty woman of God is praying even as I write this. WOTL is blessed!

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