Here toward the end of December, I flutter about amidst presents, and cookies, and festive parties. Family traditions and Christmas twinkle lights bring a cheery glow to my heart.
As precious and comforting as all these holiday celebrations may be, though, I don’t want to turn them into a substitute for what my soul most desperately needs. Amidst all the Christmas sparkle, my heart longs for quiet moments too. Opportunities to savor the sweetest gifts: Family. Friends. The story of Bethlehem’s baby, bursting into a dark night with the light of Love.
And a New Year is coming. A collection of fresh days stretches out on the new calendar I will hang on my wall shortly. And I will need more to sustain me than the memory of holiday festivities or the presents that bear my name beneath the tree.
As we look toward January, many of us consider making New Years’ resolutions. We make promises with good intentions, and hope for better things in the year ahead. But how often do we actually have success sticking to these commitments? How often do we slip back into our old ways, letting well-worn habits woo us back to where we started?
Left to our own devices, most of our promises lose their luster before January even comes to a close.
As I look toward 2019, I wonder if we might do better to start this new year with a focus on God’s promises, instead of our own. What if we reminded ourselves of his character and goodness before we started trying to make resolutions about our own? It might just shape our year in new and surprising ways.
As I look toward 2019, I wonder if we might do better to focus on God’s promises, instead of our own
I’ve got nothing against resolutions, friends. We can all use a fresh start and fresh energy at times. But I hope we set goals rooted in God’s purposes, rather than making misguided efforts to pursue our own agendas. I hope we move into a new year drawing on his strength rather than our own limited resources.
What does God want you to pursue in the year ahead? If you’d like to seek an answer to that question, I’ve created a great little resource to help you do that. It’s a free printable, 7-day prayer journal that will help you reflect on God’s promises through Scripture reading, writing, and reflection.
My hope is that as you reflect on these promises, you’ll see where your heart is struggling to believe them. Or where your life has not been aligned with them. It’s right there, in those places of doubt or disorder, that God might be challenging you to grow in the year ahead.
Each day includes space for you to do the following:
- Read It: a Bible verse (or two) for you to read
- Write It: space to write the passage
- Draw It: a space to respond creatively by drawing a word or image that the passage brings to mind
- Reflect On It: Space to reflect on God’s promise–and whether you are really living as though you believe it.
- Pray It: Space to write a short prayer.
Grab the download by clicking on the blue box below. I pray it will fill your heart with inspiration and hope for the days ahead!
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