A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps. Proverbs
I remember many years ago when my brother Jim and I helped Mom
plan a 50th birthday party for my Dad. Mom left the room as Jim and I were addressing invitations and we began discussing how OLD 50 was, Jim in his unique humor said, “Dad was getting so old he could probably fart dust”. As I get closer to that age myself I’m amazed how fast the years fly by and how YOUNG 50 seems to me now.
We have one more day until we flip the page to a new month and a new year. I’m not sure how we got to the end of the calendar already but 2013, here we come! I think there is something exciting about hanging a new calendar inside the kitchen cupboard door. I like looking at all the empty boxes before they start getting filled up with events and appointments. I’m seriously hoping right about now there are at least a few of you who still keep a paper calendar…or are still a wee bit behind the technology revolution like I am.
I like the last day of the year because it’s the perfect time to look back and look ahead. I like to thumb through the 12 pages of the old calendar and remember events, activities and games and savor the memories of the year that’s ending. I also like to look at the fresh pages of the year that lies ahead and think about the possibilities and excitement of the blessings and trials and triumphs God has in store for me in 2013. It’s kind of like straddling the threshold of what we’re finishing and what we’re beginning.
However you look at it, it’s the perfect time for prayer. We should offer prayers of thanksgiving for the blessings of the past year and prayers to offer God all that will be in the New Year ahead. It’s the perfect time to dedicate 2013 to Him. Ask Him to be in charge of it ALL…right from the start! Promise to go where He leads you and ask Him to use the twelve pages of your new calendar to help you grow closer to Him and live the plan He has for you. Ask Him to guide you and love you and shower you with His grace and mercy each day of this New Year.
Lots of folks will take some time to jot down some resolutions. I think we only need one…to follow Him more closely. The closer we follow Him, the easier it is to be like Him and there is no resolution more important than that! Instead of making a silly little list of 43 things we’re going to change (42 of which we will forget by Valentine’s Day) ask Him to show you which things are getting between Him and you. Ask Him to show you what things in your life are adding stress, worry and pulling you away from Him. Then ask Him to show you how to replace them with His peace. Working on those things will be fruitful work and work that will be blessed. It’s not always easy work, but if it is inspired by Him, it will be important and worthwhile work. I
was reading a book by Matthew Kelly recently and one line smacked me right between the eyes. I’ve been saving it for this very post. The quote very simply said, Just get to the task…nobody can take your bath for you! I have to decide to make the changes, commitments and adjustments…by myself! That’s just all there is to it. I have to decide what I'm putting in God's way and then set about the business of getting it shoved to the side so He can draw me in!
A seed to plant: Before you get ready to celebrate this New Year’s Eve, take some time to pray about what God has planned for you in 2013. Ask Him to show you what stands in the way of you and Him then make a plan to change that!
Blessings on your day!
Merry Christmas everyone! I will be taking the week off to celebrate with family and friends. I hope you have a beautiful Christmas and I'll be back with joyful words next Monday the 31st!
Blessings on your day!
For unto us a child is born...Isaiah 9:6
As we enjoy these next few days leading us to Christmas we should take some time to focus our thoughts and prayers on readying ourselves for God’s gift of perfect love; His Son. Love is, after all the only reason God could possibly have for lavishing such a sinful people with such an extraordinary gift.
I read a little snippet from a story the other day about our world having more conveniences but less time; more degrees but less sense; deeper profits but shallower relationships; more medicine but less healthiness and tall men with short character. I understand how someone could read that little story and think it summed up all the woes of the world. After reading it, I realized that the farther our culture separates from
God and His love, the more out of balance things get. It seems easier to expect the world around us to change rather than put
our priorities in order and ask God for the grace and mercy to make changes in our own life. If each of us had an overwhelming desire to love and serve Him first and ourselves second, the world would change in an instant.
Many things have come along over the years that have changed the world. Henry Ford’s Model-T weighed 1,450 pounds and it changed the way the world moved. The first washing machine weighed over 250 pounds and it made cleaning things easier. The first computer weighed nearly one ton and it gave the world access to more knowledge and communication. As valuable, helpful and convenient as these and other modern changes are, they haven’t always changed our life for the better. In fact sometimes changes in our world
just muddy up the water and clutter our focus. Bigger, faster and more convenient isn’t always better. Sometimes all these changes lead us away from the love, peace and joy God sent His Son to this earth to bring us.
The most significant change for the people of God’s earth weighed only seven pounds and arrived in the most humble surrounding imaginable. There was no million dollar marketing scheme to prepare us for His arrival. There was no multi-million dollar Super Bowl commercial to get us all hyped up about His coming. There was simply a seven pound miracle that came to change EVERYTHING! If we would embrace it and all the Christ Child brought us, we could move through our days with hearts overflowing with joy. We would travel through life here on earth more easily than the first passengers in a Model-T. If we opened ourselves to God’s mercy and forgiveness, we would be washed whiter than any garment to pass through even the most efficient washing machine. If we would share the love that little seven pound wonder came to bring us, we would speak and act with more wisdom and knowledge than any computer could generate. Maybe, if we would slow down this Christmas to absorb the absolute Wonder and Awe of the coming of Christ, we would begin to find our balance and see that God sent His Son to earth to change us significantly.
A seed to plant: Take time this Christmas to gaze at the Christ Child in the manger and ask God to help you see what changes are needed to draw closer to Him. It’s ok to start small, after all the biggest change ever only weighed seven pounds.
Blessings on your day!
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