Looking Ahead

30 12 2011

I love the week between Christmas and New Year’s. It is a time of both reflection and anticipation. There is something special about sitting under a warm quilt and counting the blessings that have piled up during the last year. I love to trace God’s hand on my family, contemplate the simple things that filled our days with joy, count the friends that touched our hearts, review the struggles that taught us humility and dependence, and stand in wonder at the immeasurable gift of grace that overflowed on us. It is a neat time to take notice of all of the ways God worked, moved, and stood with us. The end of the year is a good time to take inventory of how we have grown, the level of our surrender, and the ways that we see God more clearly.

While we count down to the end of 2011, 2012 lies before us full of possibilities. It is in those possibilities that God wants us to dream. He longs for us to open our eyes to the opportunities that are ours in Him. In 2012, He will invite us deeper into His presence, offer us the chance to experience amazing transformation, and call us to more complete surrender.

As you make your plans for the fresh starts and new beginnings that 2012 has in store for you, here are five suggestions for practical steps that will help you in your desire to look more like Jesus.

1. Start a gratitude journal. Write down three things every day for which you are thankful.

2. Keep a prayer list. Make a list of the people, situations, and circumstances for which you pray. Pay special attention to the way God answers you.

3. Commit to Bible study. Bible study is the most important spiritual discipline you can embrace if you want to look more like Jesus. Read your Bible daily. Join a Bible study group. Invest in a Bible study resource.

4. Find time to be quiet every day. Give God ten minutes of your day. Be still. Let Him speak to your heart. Honor the truth that He is Lord. Sit humbly before Him and let yourself be loved.

5. Sing a song. Singing has a special way of cementing truths in our hearts. Pick a worship song, a psalm of praise, or a verse of “Jesus Loves Me” and sing it out loud every day.

My Jesus Resolution today is to look back and look forward. I am going to stop and count the ways that God has moved in my life to help me look more like Jesus. I am also going to prepare my heart for the adventure that being His child will bring in 2012. I want to bow deeper, surrender more quickly, listen more readily, and see more clearly. I can look back at this last year and see the countless ways God moved to bring me closer to Himself. I can’t wait to see and experience all He has in store for 2012.


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2 responses

30 12 2011
Jamie

Thank you for your thoughts today and every day. The encouragement to grow in Christ is one we all need. I am glad to read your blog postings.

31 12 2011
Lynda

Great list for 2012

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