January 2016 Newsletter
R.E. Neighbour wrote, “THE New Year means an everlasting farewell to the Old Year. We may not relive the “old”; but we may, by God’s help, redeem the “new.” We face the New Year in the joy of new possibilities, and in the settled purpose to redeem the time. The first day of January always seems radiant with glory, calling us to new undertakings and accomplishments.” –Gems of Gold: Daily Meditations.
The exalted Jesus said “Behold I am making all things new.” (Revelation 21:5)
All of 2015 is a thing of the past. I hope you will remember this. The byword for 2016 needs to be “That was then. This is now!” With each passing day we are reminded that the best is yet to be. While we can certainly learn from the past, we must never live in it.
It is my prayer that 2016 will be your best year ever. This is possible as we continue to live within the G3 lifestyle. Remember always be Grateful … Gracious … Generous. Look for ways to implement these in the daily of your life. I am praying for you to be your best in every area of life.
This time of the year causes many of us to be a bit reflective. When we take the “Year in Review” it can bring a multitude of emotions into play. 2015 was certainly filled with many news worthy events – some very positive and others very negative. My intent here is not to focus on the past rather it is to look ahead to the future. The Apostle Paul wrote to this friends in Philippi
I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead,
I press on to reach the end of the race and receive
the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”
— Philippians 3:13b-14 NLT
Remember … Whatever is in the well, comes up in the bucket! Our heart is a sponge and nearly immediately soaks up whatever is poured in to it. Our life will constantly produce the things that we put in to our heart. When I soak up the things of the world and the flesh into my heart then I will spew forth those same things when I speak. I must be careful to pour into my heart the truth of God’s word and His character. David wrote
“I have hidden [treasured] your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you [God].”
—Psalm 119:11 NLT
It is my prayer that 2016 will be a great year for us all. I hope that our wells will be full of the Word of God so that whenever you look into your bucket you will see only the crystal clear Water of God’s word.
To this end, I want to encourage you to join me in what I am calling the “One-A-Week” challenge. This is how it works. Each Sunday I will post a blog which contains a verse of scripture to memorize. Throughout the week I hope we will think about the verse and commit to memory. By this time next year, we will have 52 verses of scripture in our wells that we will be able to draw upon all the time!
Here are some long held ideas about the best way to memorize scripture:
1. Be intentional. Write the verse on an index card. I know we are in a digital age, but I promise you that by physically writing the verse out on a card you will be able to more quickly memorize it. Besides, at the end of the year you will have 26 cards (a verse on the front and back of each card) that you will cherish in the years to come.
2. Be involved. Find the verse in your Bible. When you find the verse, use a highlighter to mark it on the actual pages of your Bible.
3. Be deliberate. Set aside a few moments each day to review and repeat the scripture out loud. You might even like to have an audio version of the verse that you can listen to. This can easily be done through apps for your phone. The most user friendly app I’ve found is https://www.bible.com/
4. Be creative. Make your own recording of the verse on your device and listen to it over and over again.
5. Be committed. While this might seem overwhelming on the front end, I promise that you will be blessed beyond your imagination as we work through this challenge.
I hope you will join me in this challenge and continue now to put God’s word into your heart. Just so you will know how easy this is, I’ll give you a peek at Week 1’s verse…click here