New Year, Better you

This time of year I often hear people setting their New Years resolutions, and it has really made me think this year.
Some of the more common I have heard:
*I’m going to lose x amount of weight
* I’m going to eat better
*I’ll go to the gym
*I won’t drink so much
*I’m giving up pop
The list just continues to go on, but one thing I’ve realized is I never hear, I will grow closer to God. I will read my bible everyday, I will pray every day. Most people I’m sure would say they could improve their relationship with the Lord somehow. I’m not saying you should make these your New Years resolutions, lets face it most of those are forgotten about in a week. Instead make a promise. Sit down and pray for guidance, let God lead you to what you need to do to grow closer to him. I personally do have my favorites, and maybe they can help inspire you too.

1. Bible Reading:
I find it relaxing to sit down with a cup of coffee and my Bible. What better way to become closer to the Lord than by reading the book that is here to Guide you through everything in Life! I also prefer to have more than one version with me when reading. I like to read the NIV Bible, but when something sticks out to me I also go and re-read it in my KJV. I mark scripture in both bibles and write little notes. Even if it’s just a few minutes a day, pick up your bible, I bet it makes your day better too.

2. Bible Study:
You can participate in a Bible Study in many ways. There are often groups available at your church, you can order individual studies, or you can participate in online studies. The current Bible Study I’m doing is the book of Ephesians, however next week we will start the Present over Perfect study, this is a dvd/study guide package. If you would like to join us you can go to my home page for the link to purchase this. I try to keep the studies affordable, and will bounce between ordering materials or picking a book in the bible and studying it daily.

3. Reading:
I love to read, which is also why I offer reviews on here. I read a lot of Christian books that are Fiction, Lifestyle books, Parenting, Marriage, and family books. Tony Evans, Pricilla Shirer, and Stormie Omartian  are a few of my favorites when it comes to Christian marriage, parenting and family books. My husband and I have recently started the Kingdom series by Tony Evans. We have the couples devotional, Kingdom Man and Woman, Raising Kingdom Kids and The Resolutions for both Men and Women. I will admit this is also why I haven’t been putting out reviews almost daily, I am currently reading at least 2 books at a time. For those of you that travel for work, I would suggest getting audio books to listen to in the car.

4. Devotionals
A daily devotional is a great way to get the good word and doesn’t take much time. If you are married I would suggest a couples devotional. We really like the Kingdom Marriage, it has a  very short daily passage and then follows up with 3 questions for you and your spouse to answer. Quiet times for couples is another favorite of ours, and we recently received the Love Dare devotional so we are excited to begin that one too. My husband enjoys the Duck Commander devotional and my daughter likes her 3 Minute Devotional for little girls. I personally use the Daily Wisdom for Women everyday in addition to my couples devotionals.

My point is that there isn’t one set way to do a little more. Without my faith I’m not sure how I would have gotten through the holidays. I used to shut down when grieving. I’m not saying that the depression didn’t creep in and make me want to crawl in a hole, it did. But I prayed, over and over, for strength and peace. I knew I needed to be there for others as well and we needed to lean on each other. My husband played a big roll in helping me through it. He dropped everything and stayed with me, he prayed with me, and was there when I needed to just cry.  1 Corinthians 13:2 really stood out to me ( If I have the gift of prophesy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. ) Without love you truly have nothing, and one thing that I realized I am truly blessed with is the ability to love so many people and have so many people who love me. Love and the Lord  is what got me through the holidays this year. If that’s not blessed then I don’t know what is.

God Bless and travel safely home!

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