I’ll get right to the point. People need a great modern-day plan with options and action steps to build a solid Christian framework that helps manage their life. Believers need to make their faith practical. You need some directives that help you “work out your salvation.” (Phil. 2:12)
Over the decades, I’ve shared portions of my life journey with a variety of travel companions. I also figured out that I don’t always have control over who my travel companions will be. Some have been pleasant, encouraging, and faithful. Others have been very unwanted. At times, their presence has felt like an intrusion – even a violation. And they would not go away. Sorrow and Loss were the worst, surpassed only by Judgment. Well, no. I take that back. Betrayal was the very worst.
“One of the first things you do when you walk into a room is turn on the light. That helps you see everything in the room, prevents falls and bumps, and helps you find your way. It gives familiarity to you in your environment and makes you feel welcome to the room.
It’s easy to turn a light on in a room. Why is it such a challenge to turn on the light in your thoughts and in your soul?
I’ve been thinking about Jesus’ age when He completed His life on earth. He died at only 33! That’s just not very old! At a youthful age, Jesus handled Himself with exceeding wisdom. He understood deep, hidden things of God. Jesus knew Himself and was comfortable in His own skin. He was the only young man who lived with unmatched excellence. No sin. Just love. To this day, He still loves perfectly!
At 33, I was still figuring out who I am. Somewhat naïve. Inexperienced. I didn’t understand a lot about life. I’m older with different perspectives and conclusions, yet there is still so much I don’t know. Life is filled with things that can’t be explained or neatly packed away. I think I’m making less mistakes than when I was 33. But that’s just it! I was making mistakes. To this day, I still do.
I’m guessing you’ve had at least one time in your life when you felt your relationship with God was good. Maybe. Some have had several seasons. Yet, like seasons of the year, they keep changing. Your relationship with God shifts.
What causes these shifts? Why the change? Who cuts in on your successes? Your peace. Freedom. Growth. What pushes you to your edge? Causes you to fall? And why do you go there?
Life: Life has rhythms. Ebb and flow. Continual change. Basic principles stay the same, but the message everywhere is – “change it up!” What you grew accustomed to has been switched out. Life is constantly pulsating. Whether it’s people, business, agriculture, medicine, ministry, science. It’s never quite the same each day. Some people find that adventurous. Others, threatening.
I had my annual visit with my Dr. last week. We had a great conversation about aging. Apparently, I’m right on target for getting old! And, although I don’t have control over the inevitable aging process – apparently, I’m making some good decisions.
Today I was reminded why I do what I do with Intentional Living.
My life is super full! Lots of responsibilities – like your life. People depend on me to do my bit – like people depend on you. I have some wonderful experiences and memories – I’m sure you have some. And I have my share of extremely hard times. Challenges, losses, hurts. I bet you’ve had your share, as well.
The end of one year morphs into a new one by the simple passing of time. Days slip by all year, but when the passing of days end one thing and begin another, they are noteworthy.
Your life is a line, not a dot. Your life line is made up of segments of time – spaces between 2 dots where time passes. You live your life in these segments with your to-do lists, goals, responsibilities, dreams, plans, ministry, etc. Segments of time are:
You are living between 2 dots right now in this special week sandwiched between Christmas and the New Year. It’s significant. This week ends one year and begins another. You need a whole new calendar! In this critical week, I encourage you to be thoughtful about 7 things:
Did you know your choices about thankfulness reflect your relationship with God? They reveal your level of commitment and love back to God. They measure your trust in Him. And they determine whether you will follow through in 2 things: obeying Him and resting in Him. All these show how much gratitude you have and what kind of perspective you live with daily.
If thankfulness tells this much about you from your inside out, what can you do to get more of it? And how do you live unafraid to show who you really are?